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'US deadlines for N-deal insult to Indian democracy'
October 25, 2007 18:25 IST
Rebuffing United States' insistence on India moving fast on the nuclear deal, the Communist Party of India-Marxist on Thursday said setting of such deadlines was an 'insult' to Indian democracy.
"The democratic processes of any country cannot be influenced by external pressures and by the needs of another country," CPI-M politburo member Sitaram Yechury wrote in an editorial in the forthcoming issue of party organ People's Democracy.
"The setting up of such deadlines is in itself an insult to Indian democracy," he said.
Yechury's remarks was in response to Tuesday's statement by US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Nicholas Burns in New York that India needs to move fast on the deal and hoped it would take a 'positive decision.'
Burns said India has to move fast because his government would like to send the final legislation sealing the deal to the Congress by the year end. He had also stated that it was not a good idea to send a major legislation to the Congress in spring or summer of an election year.
The deal, he said, was reached after tough negotiations and has bipartisan support in the Congress.
Repeatedly stressing that he does not want to interject himself in the political debate now going on among the members of the 'rather large' ruling coalition in India, the US official noted that the recent statement by External Affairs MinIster Pranab Mukherjee did not rule out the deal.
New Delhi has to reach an agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency on safeguards and then secure the approval from the Nuclear Suppliers Group to permit nuclear commerce with India.
Amid efforts by Left parties to garner support from the Third Front for a debate in Parliament to elicit majority opinion on the Indo-US nuclear deal, Yechury said the BJP will do the 'greatest disservice' to the nation if it disrupted proceedings during the winter session.
He said the BJP 'having perfected the art of speaking with a forked tongue,' continued to remain 'ambiguous' over its stand on the nuclear deal.
Yechury said disruption of Parliamentary proceedings in the Monsoon session was directed primarily at preventing an exposure of its 'duplicity' on this issue.