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'N-deal panel internal arrangement between UPA, left'
September 06, 2007 16:36 IST
Communist Party of India general secretary A B Bardhan on Thursday said the 15-member panel set up by the United Progressive Alliance on the nuclear deal is an internal arrangement between the government and the supporting Left parties, and has nothing to do with Parliament.
Bardhan, who is heading a 'Jatha' (protest march) from Kolkata to Visakhapatnam [Images], told media persons in Bhubaneswar that the Left and the UPA had sharp differences on the whole issue of the nuclear deal and the panel had been set up only to consider these differences.
The CPI leader said the opposition has full right to voice its concern over the nuclear deal and put forth their views on the issue and it was for the government to respond to their demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee probe into the issue.
He, however, clarified that JPC has a special task to probe into scams and scandals, and never set up to discuss the policy of the government.
On the naval exercise, Bardhan said the UPA government was trying to white wash the issue by stating that such exercises were also held in the past, adding that there should not be any confusion over the left protest on the issue.
Earlier, only bilateral exercised were held but in the present naval exercise, as many as five countries were involved in which the US, Australia and Japan [Images] were linked on a military defence agreement, Bardhan said.
The CPI leader said he did not find any reason why India should join such a military alliance and allow the naval exercise to be held in the Bay of Bengal and be a party to US military strategy.
By conducting the naval exercise, the US, Bardhan said, wanted to send a strong message to the Asia, Africa and also China.
The common minimum programme clearly stipulated that India should follow an independent foreign policy, promote the multilateralism and oppose the unilateralism in the world, which the US was pursuing.
The CPI leader refused to speculate about the possibility of mid-term elections in the country but said the time has come to review the performance of the UPA government. He, however, said even the BJP was not in favour of a mid-term elections as aired by its spokesman to a television channel.
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