Nuke deal good for India: PM assures Parliament
New Delhi, Aug 13: Rejecting outright the contention of the Left and the opposition parties that the Indo-US Nuclear Deal curtailed the country's strategic autonomy and impinged on its independent foreign policy, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today asserted that the much criticised agreement did not in any way affect the country's right to conduct a nuclear test in the future.
''Let me reiterate once again that a decision to undertake a future nuclear test would be our sovereign decision, one that rests solely with the Government,'' Dr Singh assured Parliament in an elaborately detailed eight-page suo motu statement -- made in both Houses amid equal pandemonium.
The Left parties -- which support the ruling United Progressive Alliance -- staged a walk-out even as Dr Singh was reading out his statement in the Rajya Sabha amidst lusty sloganeering.
They were followed by the Samajwadi Party -- and finally the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party.
The Prime Minister, too -- chastened by his experience earlier in the day in the Lok Sabha, made short shrift of his originally eight-page statement. His reading was over in barely three minutes.
And Chairman Hamid Ansari was left to do the honours -- declare the House adjourned till tomorrow morning.
Earlier in the day, too, the Rajya Sabha had suffered adjournment till 1600 hrs following pandemonium as the BJP demanded a discussion on the Goa issue, the Congress averred that the grave flood situation in the northern states demanded immediate attention while the Left Parties and Telugu Desam called for a debate on the Khammam firing.