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Govt bending to US pressure: CPI

Defence Minister made it clear that foreign policies pursued by the Govt were in enlightened national interest.

india Updated: Feb 27, 2006 19:13 IST

Arraigning the Government for "betraying" Iran by voting against it at IAEA, CPI on Monday accused it in Lok Sabha of "bending" to US "pressures".

The saffron party, however, dubbed the decision as a "camp follower" of the Americans.

Rejecting the charge, Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee made it clear that foreign policies pursued by the Government were in "enlightened national interest".

Pranab Mukherjee added that India "recognises and values" its friendship with Iran.

CK Chandrappan, CPI, said India has "betrayed a country which has stood by it like a rock".

Terming India's vote in IAEA as a "shameful episode", he hoped this would be put behind when the issue comes up on March 6 and it would abstain.

Criticising the Government for coming out with "knee-jerk" responses, BK Khanduri, said it had not held any consultations with political parties and there was no planning before its decision.

Intervening in a discussion on India's vote at IAEA on Iran issue, Mukherjee emphatically stated that India will have "credible deterrent" as a nuclear weapon state while not giving up the path of non-proliferation.

He said India has no intention of signing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. "It is a fraud treaty and discriminatory".

On Iran's nuclear programme, he said as a signatory to the NPT, Iran has every right to peaceful uses of nuclear energy consistent with its international commitments and obligations.

At the same time, it was incumbent upon Iran to exercise these rights in the context of safeguards that it has voluntarily accepted upon its nuclear programme under the IAEA, he said.

First Published: Feb 27, 2006 19:13 IST