Sunday, August 19, 2007

Left, this is not right

Will the Left Front withdraw support to the Congress government of Manmohan Singh?

I doubt if they will.


They won't achieve anything by doing that. They would no longer be able to hog the limelight. They would have no platform to express their anti-US stand. Nuclear deal is not an issue the large mass of electorate understand, much less, is ready to debate. The Left runs the risk of being branded a villain who imposed election over an issue to which the public can't relate.

Why are they then creating this ruckus?

The fair reason: The Left parties have a number of points which are in direct conflict with their well-known strong stand against American policies. It needs to be seen that they have tried their level best to dilute the extent of cooperation with the US, if not, all together annul the agreement.

The unfair reason: The Left parties are getting international publicity by raising objections to the nuclear deal, the sort they would never have got. Leaders like Karat and Yechuri are almost always on TV. I am sure a number of American diplomats must be trying to find out who this Karat and Yechuri are!

What's the confusion all about?

There is no confusion. If at all there is, it's a creation of Left parties' opposition to the deal. None of the Left leaders are clear and specific what exactly they are up against.
The Left is making all this noise after the deal has been signed and sealed. They know well that it can't be renegotiated. The Left must accept the assurances given by the Congress. It must accept the fact that the US has been been fair to India on many points in this deal, especially on the aspect of Non-proliferation Treaty. The way India has taken a stand on the NPT -- and got away with it, right from the major showdown time when Rajiv Gandhi's was the PM -- is a spectacular achievement. Remember, how India resisted US pressure to sign the NPT. I find no justification for the Left being so
obstinate and belligerent.

Is it true that India's interests have been sacrificed for America's benefit?

I don't think so. Even China and Russia have deals with the US. Not only it is not a crime to deal with the US, I don't think there is an alternative. Let us be candid about it. Even Karat and Yechuri will admit that.

Then why are they making the noise?

The Left feels we should get a deal favourable to us and not one favourable to the US.

Is this loaded in US favour?

Agreements over contentious issues, by definition, involve give and take. It's difficult to quantify how much ground has been conceded and how much has been gained. Let us recognise this fact that America has conceded ground to India on a number issues. Bush has been severely criticised by the non-proliferation lobby for being soft towards India.

Opponents say India will never be able to test a nuclear bomb, and if it does, the consequences will be severe. Is that true?

It's a hypothetical situation. Why should we bother beyond a reasonable extent about such things, about which no one really knows? India has clearly said that we will test only if there is a clear need for it. So, this scenario clearly exists in an unknown future. And, it has been made amply clear that even if India tests, the fineprint in the agreement can be used to interpret the reasons for India going in for the test and India will be able to get away with it. Besides, there are a few areas on which negotiations are still pending, like with IAEA and NSG.

So, is this deal good or bad?

Overall it is good. I personally have faith in India's top leadership, whether it be of the BJP or the Congress, and also in the top bureaucrats, that they have the larger interests of India in mind. Remember, this is not a deal arrived at privately by two individuals.

What will happen now?

There is a huge risk in predicting political scenarios. My guess is the issue will be given a nice and quiet burial. Left will harass Congress the most, but won't break the partnership. Congress will willingly suffer the harassment. All will wait for a new issue to come up, and when it comes, this will be pushed to the backburner to the comfort of all.


  1. AS always, well articulated. I agree with you on all counts.

  2. The negative mentality of left is all too clear. i don't know what they hope to achieve with all this. what do they thing they are. out to spoil our country. pity we ve such people ruling us.

  3. Its hard to believe the thirst for media time that leftists have now. Having been an avid fan of the 'real' marxian ideologies, I despise the attitude of the 'new age' leftists. You have noted down the points precisely, and as you told its just a premature 'balampidatham' that will just give some airtime in tv.

  4. Very thoughtful indeed. Very insightful... The point though, as you commented - is really how many people on the street will understand all this; particularly in the media brouhaha. The media, too, is given undue coverage to the likes of Karat...