PM meeting with Bush stands despite Left move to part ways

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Sapporo, Japan, Jul 8 (UNI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's schedule of bilateral with US President George Bush and meetings with other influential members of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) to seek their support for the Indo-US civil nuclear deal remains unchanged despite the Left parties decision today to withdraw support to his government over the issue.

CPI (M) general secretary Prakash Karat said in Delhi they would meet President Pratibha Patil tomorrow to formally declare their withdrawal of support to the UPA government.

Mr Karat took exception to the Manmohan Singh government's keeping the draft of the IAEA agreement a secret from the people of India.

The Prime Minister, who held a bilateral with Chinese President Hu Jintao here today, is scheduled to hold a pre-breakfast meeting with Mr Bush tomorrow at Toyako. Official sources said Dr Singh will keep his early morning date with Mr Bush at 0740 hrs as already scheduled. Staying at Sapporo, the Prime Minister will undertake a 2-hour early morning journey by car to the lakeside resort of Toyako where G-8 leaders are staying and holding parleys. He leaves here for the meeting at 0500 hrs local time.

As already stated by the Prime Minister, he wiil seek cooperation of the U S President in securing safeguards agreement with the nuclear watchdog and exemption from the powerful nuclear cartel for commerce in nuclear fuel and technology.

Though the Left has announced its decision to withdraw support from the Manmohan Singh they have been supporting for four years, yet there does not seem any imminent threat to the UPA government which has already sewn up support of 39 members of the Samajwadi Party and the Congress party is working on other smaller groups and 6 Independent MPs to face the Parliament when it comes to the crunch.

A confident Dr Singh said yesterday he was not worried about the Left's stand, adding he was not afraid of facing Parliament. " We will cross the bridge when we come to it We are well equipped to meet any contigency." The government has to secure an India-specific safeguards agreement with the IAEA and waiver from the NSG before the agreement goes to the U S Congress for ratification.

The Prime Minister pointed that the U S is committed to help in the two international institutions as per the joint agreement announced by the two nations in 2005. He also said the government would approach the IAEA "very soon", adding process of implementing the deal would move quickly.


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