David Mulford lands in new row
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David Mulford lands in new row

The US envoy has drawn fresh fire for writing a protest letter to WB's CM Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee about his comments on Bush.

india Updated: Feb 10, 2006 11:42 IST

The US envoy to India was embroiled in a new row after he objected to a communist leader calling President George W Bush the leader of a "pack of killers," a report said on Friday.

Ambassador David Mulford, already under attack from the Left over recent remarks, drew fresh fire after writing a protest letter to West Bengal's Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee about his comments on Bush, according to an Indian newspaper.

Bhattacharjee riposted with a "strong letter" to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, saying the envoy breached protocol by writing directly to a state government, the newspaper said.

Bhattacharjee called Bush the leader of the "most organised pack of killers in the world" at a rally last month where he also accused the Congress government of pursuing a pro-US foreign policy.

Thenewspaper said Mulford told Bhattacharjee in his letter that West Bengal was a key foreign investment destination and such remarks could be detrimental, especially in drawing US investment.

Last month, leftists demanded Mulford's recall after he made comments that prompted a protest from New Delhi.

Mulford had suggested New Delhi could lose out on a landmark nuclear deal with Washington if it did not vote against Iran at a meeting of the UN atomic watchdog, which took place early this month. Mulford later told the government he regretted the Iran comments.

India voted along with 26 other nations to report Iran to the UN Security Council over its nuclear programme.

The envoy has also raised hackles for questioning leftists' opposition to the opening of India's retail sector to foreign investment.

First Published: Feb 10, 2006 11:42 IST