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Let PM make statement to allay our fears: SP

July 02, 2008 19:26 IST
Last Updated: July 02, 2008 20:14 IST

Samajwadi Party, whose 39 Lok Sabha lawmakers are crucial to the United Progressive Alliance government to retain its majority if the Left parties withdraw support, on Wednesday appeared to be inching closer to the Congress party even as it wanted that its apprehensions regarding the Indo-US nuclear deal be allayed.

Next steps in the nuclear deal

Indications of SP being open to doing business with the Congress were also evident in its attack on the BJP saying fundamentalism and communalism were a 'bigger danger' than the nuclear deal. At the same time it said it cannot support the deal till Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [Images] comes out with a public statement allaying their misgivings.

After getting a special briefing from National Security Advisor M K Narayanan on the deal at an undisclosed location, SP leader Amar Singh told media persons that it was for the prime minister to decide how he would meet their concerns.

"What Narayanan told us is alright, but the prime minister should make a public statement in Parliament or outside and tell the nation publicly. Till then it is not possible for us to support the deal," he said, adding that the party had its apprehensions over the provisions of 123 Agreement and the US Hyde Act.

Realignment of forces on the cards

SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav's brother and Parliamentary Party leader Ram Gopal Yadav was also present during the briefing.

Singh said on the basis of the briefings they had from the Left parties earlier, the SP had some misgivings, which it had expressed in Parliament.

Narayanan was also asked about the anti-Iran vote cast by India in the IAEA which it felt amounted to compromising India's sovereignty, he said.

Samajwadi Party is against early poll

Attacking BJP, Singh said that for SP communalism and fundamentalism were bigger enemies. "More than the deal, we are worried about intentions of communal forces of turning UP into a laboratory of Hindu extremism.

"Keeping in the mind the sensitivities in view of the fact that Agra [Images], Mathura, Kashi are in UP and the statement by a fundamentalist leader of the BJP that UP will become the next Gujarat, we do not want innocent Muslims to be killed like in Gujarat post Godhra," he said.

The party also took into account the declaration by L K Advani in Kanpur a few days ago that SP was the number one enemy of BJP in Uttar Pradesh, he said.

He said BJP leader Jaswant Singh came and met him on Wednesday and suggested that the Left parties, SP and BSP should along with BJP form a block and vote against the government on the deal.

He also quoted the BJP leader as saying that the line of Left parties and the BJP was one and the same, but he added that SP's line was different, as it felt that communalism was a bigger danger.

"There is a world of difference between the ideologies of SP and BJP," he said, adding that the SP had rejected the BJP's offer of a V P Singh-type experiment last year under which Mulayam Singh Yadav would be made the Prime Minister with outside support from the BJP and Left parties.

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