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Congress to make N-deal a poll issue

delhi Updated: Jul 13, 2008 00:05 IST
Prasad Nichenametla
Prasad Nichenametla
Hindustan Times
Cong to make N-deal a poll issue

While continuing with its efforts to garner a majority for the government in the Lok Sabha, the Congress party is simultaneously preparing to take the issue of the nuclear deal to the people and make it into an election issue. “Whether the government falls or survives, the nuclear deal will be an election issue,” AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh said.

At a meeting with Congress General Secretaries on Saturday, party chief Sonia Gandhi stressed the need to take the nuclear deal to the public and explain to them what the deal is all about and what implications it will have on the nation’s development.

The party strategy is also aimed at preempting the Left, which has already announced that its plans for a nation-wide campaign to explain the problems of the deal. “There is a need to explain to the people what the deal is all about, our interactions with the Left — how we tried our best to convince them and the circumstances that led to withdrawal of support,” Digvijay Singh, general secretary, Congress, said. Singh said that the party would also bring out election material to convey the message to the voters.

The Congress is also questioning the secular credentials of the Left. “The UPA government was formed on the suggestion of the Left to counter the communal forces in the country. But now the Left, under the leadership of Prakash Karat, is voting along with those communal forces to bring down the government,” Singh said.

The Government has already launched a media blitzkrieg by carrying huge ads in major newspapers today. Explaining the importance of nuclear energy the ad said, “The nation now needs to unite and support the government for the economic growth and better future of the country.”

When asked about the numbers that the party had managed to gather for the trust vote on July 22, Singh said, “We are putting all our strength to see that the vote of confidence is passed.” Singh also said that there might be an alliance of the Congress, SP and RLD in Uttar Pradesh.