Indo-US n-deal: UPA-Left meet tomorrow, Left sticks to No

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New Delhi, Jun 24 (UNI) Hardening their resistance to the Indo-US nuclear pact, Left parties today said they will ask the Government to come clean at tomorrow's crucial meeting of the UPA-Left panel on the contentious issues pertaining to the 123 Agreement and the Hyde Act and rejected the allies' reported formula for an rapprochement.

The poll-wary UPA allies are understood to have suggested a Government-Left patch up by which the Government will not go ahead on the nuclear deal after completing the pending business on the India-specific safeguards agreement with the IAEA.

This view emerged when UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi took the initiative after the Left leaders called on DMK supremo M Karunanidhi in Chennai and urged him to mediate to end the standoff between the Government and the Left parties on the nuclear pact.

NCP chief Sharad Pawar, RJD chief Lalu Prasad and LJP president Ram Vilas Paswan met Ms Gandhi on Monday and gave her their political assessment. CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat also met Mr Pawar in this connection.

Left parties' comments came on the eve of the crucial meeting of the UPA-Left panel tomorrow. Earlier, two scheduled meetings have been postponed for different reasons.

Tomorrow's meeting assumes significance in view of the Government's keenness to execute the Indo-US nuclear deal, the Left parties' vehement resistance and hectic parleys within the Congress and the Government, the partners in the Government and the partners and the Left leaders.

Describing tomorrow's meeting as ''crucial'', CPI general secretary A B Bardhan in Bhubaneshwar maintained that the Left would stick to its ''firm'' stand on the nuclear issue but did not foresee the fall of the UPA government at the Centre.

''The Left parties are not keen to withdraw support from the UPA government but if they (UPA) fall on their own how can we prevent it,'' he remarked.

Reacting to the allies nudging the Congress to agree for putting the nuclear deal on 'pause' after the finalisation of the safeguards agreement with IAEA, which required the Left consent to let the government complete the pending business at Vienna, Mr Bardhan and his party colleague Shamim Faizi said the patch up formula is just unacceptable.

''The Government and particularly Prime Minister Manmohan Singh should take note of what the allies are saying and what the supporting Left parties are saying on the issue,'' said Mr Bardhan, a veteran Communist and freedom fighter.

Mr Bardhan said Dr Manmohan Singh should not proceed with his own opinion only.

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