August 7, 2006


Delhi stakes all on nuclear deal with US (Siddharth Srivastava, 8/08/06, Asia Times)

The Indian government will stand or fall on the Indo-US nuclear deal. Congress party president Sonia Gandhi has made it clear that the party backs Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and will be willing to put the government at risk if coalition partners, along with the official opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), move a "resolution" against the pact in parliament. [...]

The message was strongly conveyed by Gandhi during her meeting with Sitaram Yechury, a senior leader of the left-wing parties that support the government, at her residence last week. According to reports, independently confirmed by Asia Times Online, Gandhi told Yechury that any strong move in parliament against the government on the nuclear deal would be tantamount to a vote of no confidence. This would result in the Congress party seeking to dissolve parliament and holding new elections.

Sonia reportedly told Yechury that the deal was in the national interest given the country's abysmal electric-power situation, and that the government is fully capable of ensuring that the country's sovereignty and independent decision-making is not compromised. She also emphasized that the party fully backs Manmohan, and there is no question of removing him from the post.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 7, 2006 12:31 PM
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