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Congress hopes PM with majority support will go to Japan

July 02, 2008 19:44 IST

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Asserting that Dr Manmohan Singh's [Images] visit to the G-8 Summit meeting has nothing to do with the Indo-US nuclear deal, the Congress today hoped that he would go to Japan [Images] as the prime minister of a majority government.

All India Congress Committee spokesperson Jayanthi Natarajan also exuded confidence that the United Progressive Alliance government would have the numbers to ensure the survival of the government (in the event of the Left withdrawing support).

She, however, refused to elaborate on how the government would muster up the required support. "It is wrong to reveal our strategy until the situation unfolds," she said.

Asked if the Congress anticipated the Left parties to pull the plug before the prime minister's Japan visit, she said, "We stand committed to the deal. We will continue to convince all the stakeholders, including those who give us support from outside, and bring them on board."

Natarajan refused to give any details regarding the continuing talks with the Samajwadi Party to enlist the support of its 39 members of Parliament, saying that "there is a dialogue. Dialogues happen in a democracy. Let us wait."

Asked if the Congress was in favour of the government going to the International Atomic Energy Agency for final negotiations, she said, "Whatever is within the timeframe, has to be done." She differed with the suggestion that the prime minister going to the G-8 summit was a clear signal that the government was going ahead with the deal.

In this context, Natarajan said. "India is a special invitee to the G-8 summit. The prime minister is attending the summit as part of our international obligation to the comity of nations. The visit has absolutely no connection with the deal."


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