CPI-M threatens government over nuclear deal

June 19th, 2008 - 4:44 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi, June 19 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Thursday hinted it could withdraw support to the government if it finalised an India-specific nuclear safeguards pact with the IAEA. “They have time till June 25 (the next meeting of the UPA-Left Committee) and they have to make up their mind by then. If they go ahead, we will have to reconsider our support,” CPI-M politburo member Sitaram Yechury told reporters here.

Yechury said the issue could be discussed at the next meeting of the 15-member UPA-Left nuclear committee, which is expected to meet June 25 or 26, after External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee returns from Australia.

Yechury, who met Congress president Sonia Gandhi Tuesday evening, is believed to have conveyed his party’s feeling to her. The CPI-M and three other Left parties extend key legislative support to the Manmohan Singh government.

The government has sought the Left parties’ nod to finalise the India-specific safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). The Left has rejected the plea saying they are not privy to the text of the pact with the global nuclear watchdog.

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