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PM's statement on nuke deal likely on Tuesday

The Prime Minister will reply to the debate on Iran (nuclear issue) on Monday after the question hour in Parliament.

india Updated: Mar 04, 2006 21:45 IST

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is likely to make a statement on the nuclear deal with the US on Tuesday, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi said on Saturday.

"The Prime Minister is expected to make a statement on US President George Bush's visit, most probably on Tuesday," Dasmunsi told reporters in New Delhi after a cabinet meeting chaired by Manmohan Singh.

Following a joint announcement made on Thursday by Bush and Singh that India and the US had finalised a civil nuclear deal, the government's allies like the Left parties and Samajwadi Party as well as the opposition had demanded a statement on it.

The leading Left party, the Communist Party of India-Marxist, has asked the government to clarify whether the deal has ensured that the three principles - the maintenance of independence of India's nuclear programme, the principle of reciprocity and the separation of civilian and military facilities - have been adhered to.

Muslims and Left parties had held massive demonstrations across the country to protest against Bush's three-day visit that concluded on Friday.

The Prime Minister was expected to meet Left leaders and Muslim scholars shortly to explain to them the benefits that will flow to India from the nuclear deal and dispel any apprehensions they may have about its ramifications or American intentions.

Meanwhile, Dasmunsi said the Prime Minister will reply to the debate on Iran (nuclear issue) on Monday after the question hour in Parliament.

Both Houses of Parliament had debated India's vote last month against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) with the Left parties criticising New Delhi for allegedly voting under US pressure.

First Published: Mar 04, 2006 21:45 IST