Prakash Karat, Communist Party of India (Marxist) general secretary, said that tackling inflation and handling the price rise should be more urgent issues for the United Progressive Alliance government than completing the Indo-U.S. nuclear deal.
Karat objected to the government’s haste in pushing through the deal without allowing the United Progressive Alliance-Left coordinating committee on the nuclear deal and related issues to see and discuss the safeguards agreement negotiated with the secretariat of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
The best political solution, Karat suggested, is for the government to tell the United States that it cannot pursue the deal further due to a lack of political consensus. The CPI (M) leader insisted that the Left would not accept a timetable whose urgency was dictated by the demands of the Bush administration, rather than India’s democratic processes.
The Left parties are talking to the various non-Congress constituents of the UPA to urge them to put their heads together and find a way out of this problem. On Sunday, Karat and CPI national secretary D. Raja called on Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK president M. Karunanidhi at his residence for a one-hour discussion.
The next meeting of this UPA-Left committee is on June 25.