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Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Left demands nuke deal be made public

The left has accused the Manmohan Singh government of pushing forward the “notorious” nuke deal in its bid to fulfil its commitment to US President Bush. The Left said the government has shown complete callousness towards fulfilling its commitments to the people of India.

Addressing the media after a meeting with President Pratibha Patil, CPM chief Prakash Karat said the government had not been transparent about the deal at all.

In a clear indication that the parting is complete and a lot of dirty linen would be washed in public in the days to come, Karat said that the Left will release all the exchanges between them and the government over the nuclear deal issues. Adding that he is unable to make available two more notes as this "secretive" government took them back.

In a detailed account of why they were forced to withdraw support, Karat said the UPA and the Congress have violated the agreement that they had with the left on the nuke deal.

They had made a commitment on November 16, 2007, that they would talk to the IAEA, and based on the discussions there, would present a paper to the UPA-Left joint committee, which would then be examined, and only then the next steps would be taken. However, the convenor of the nuclear deal sub committee, Pranab Mukherjee, told them that they could not do so as the papers were classified.

He demanded to know who had termed the papers classified and whether it was the UPA govt, or the IAEA.

Asserting that the text of the nuclear agreement is going to bind us in perpetuity over safeguards, he took another swipe at Manmohan Singh and his love for the USA.

“The Congress leadership and Dr Manmohan Singh always look up to the USA, but there are some good things they should learn from the USA,” he said, before delving into the latest US move to place before the Congress some additional protocols that US wants for its own nuclear deal with IAEA.

Saying that these documents are available to be viewed by anyone on the internet, he wondered how Congress can now say that IAEA wants these documents to be termed as classified. "Are we to believe that the IAEA has one standard for the US and another for us," he asked, adding that "no text can be classified unless the government itself wants it to be termed so”.

He demanded that the text be made public as the country's nuclear scientists, experts and the people have a right to know what it contains.

Thanks: TOI

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