India have got a better deal compared to China:Minister

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Hyderabad, July 14 (UNI) Senior Congress leader and Andhra Pradesh Irrigation minister P Lakshmaiah today said India had struck the best nuclear deal with the US compared to China.

The 123 agreement with the USA was in the best interest of the country to pursue India's nuclear energy programme at a time when coal and gas reserves were fast depleting, he told reporters here.

Nuclear energy accounted for only 2.5 per cent of the total power generation in the country and only one per cent of the world's power generation, he added.

Alleging that the Left and other parties were ''blindly'' opposing the deal, the Engineer-turned politician said, ''when China can enter into an agreement with the USA, why can't India.'' Referring to the price rise, he asked how could the ruling Congress be blamed for inflation, which was mainly due to the crude oil price shooting to over 140 US Dollars from a mere 28 USD in the year 2004.

The inflation rate in Asia, which was 5.5 per cent in 2004, rose to 10 per cent in 2008, he said, adding that all oil-importing countries were facing this problem.

UNI SM VA VV RLL ND1822

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