Although the recent serial blasts threaten to spoil its party, the Congress is preparing to cash in on the government’s success on the nuclear deal front, with an eye on the coming elections, for sure.
Gung ho, the party now wants to package the nuclear deal as a bijli-pani issue for the aam aadmi. And for the middle class, there’s an ego-booster: The deal has put India on the high table in international forums.
The aim is to block the Left’s anti-nuclear deal campaign and also to nibble at the BJP’s nationalism plank.
At her rally in Dadri, Uttar Pradesh, on Tuesday, Congress president Sonia Gandhi is likely to eulogise the deal. Plus, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to hold a press conference to tom-tom his government’s achievements. Though Singh’s “the people of India love Bush” statement has left the party squirming, the Congress on Monday launched its media campaign on the deal by listing 15 major gains from it, including energy security.
According to Congress spokesman Manish Tiwari, the deal, among other things, ends nuclear apartheid, recognises India as a de facto nuclear weapons state and knocks off the hyphen between India and Pakistan when it comes to strategic alliance.