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Left attacks PM again over N-deal

July 01, 2008 16:19 IST

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In a fresh attack on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images], the Communist Party of India-Marxist on Tuesday said his repeated offer to come back to Parliament before operationalising the Indo-US nuclear deal showed his "obsession" to fulfill his commitment to President George W Bush [Images] and amounted to "disregard" for Parliament.

A day after Dr Singh talked about bringing back the nuclear issue to Parliament, the CPI-M issued a statement saying if the prime minister's proposal was accepted, it would "mean fait accompli" as the only step left would be the vote in the US Congress.

The Left party said that both Houses of Parliament have already, in December 2007, "comprehensively" discussed the 123 agreement and negotiations, which have been completed with the US.

"It is on record that except for the United Progressive Alliance parties, all other parties, which constitute the majority, expressed reservations about the 123 agreement and urged the government not to proceed further," it said.

"Hence, the repetition of the proposal by the prime minister shows disregard for Parliament. It reveals nothing but an obsession to fulfill the commitment made to President Bush in July 2005 in which the people of this country and Parliament had no say," the CPI-M said.

The CPI-M statement said the 123 agreement was not put before Parliament before it was signed.

"As soon as the text of the 123 agreement was made public, the Left parties and other political parties, which represent a majority in Parliament, came out against it," it said.

It said the text of the Safeguards Agreement, negotiated with the International Atomic Energy Agency, has not been shown either to the UPA-Left Committee or made public.

"The government now insists on going ahead for getting the (IAEA) board's approval without anyone seeing the text or the UPA-Left Committee giving its concurrence," it said.

Dr Singh on Monday said he would come to Parliament "before I proceed to operationalise (the deal). What can be more reasonable than this?"

Breaking his silence on the nearly fortnight-long standoff between the UPA and the Left parties on the issue, he told senior journalists: "If Parliament feels you (government) have done some wrong, so be it."

"All that I want is the authority to proceed with the process of negotiations through all stages like the IAEA and the Nuclear SupplieG that will not not tie down the hands of the country," he said.

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