The top leadership of the CPM and CPI had an unscheduled meeting on Saturday evening to discuss the deadlock with the UPA over the Indo-US civil nuclear deal and consequences of an early election.
CPM general secretary Prakash Karat and CPI’s A.B. Bardhan had an hour-long unscheduled meeting on Saturday. They discussed threadbare the ongoing political tussle between the UPA and the Left over the deal. CPI’s Rajya Sabha MP, D Raja joined them later.
Sources said that they discussed the pros and cons of having an election now, especially how the Left parties would fare in Kerala, Bengal and Tripura. They took stock of the deliberations the Left has had with the government on the issue and the tone of the three meetings of the UPA-Left political committee, formed to resolve their differences on the deal.
Two more meetings of the committee are to be held on October 9 and 15. The Left leaders, it was learnt, are coming around to the view that the deadlock is reaching a “no return” situation for both sides.
The two leaders have reportedly decided to take the “next step” if the government initiates formal talks with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on India-specific safeguards. Official sources in the know of the fine details of the deal have kept their counsel in the face of persistent queries by newspersons at the Prime Minister's iftar.
But they dropped hints that the government would like to operationalise it as early as possible and October is a crucial month for interactions with the IAEA if Indian safeguards are to be taken up at the November meeting of IAEA's board of governors. However, they also indicated that there was room for flexibility by seeking a special meeting.
On his part, the PM said that IAEA chief Mohammad ElBaradei who will be visiting the country next week is an honoured guest and he is looking forward to welcoming him.