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'India succumbs to US pressure, misses meet on Iran pipeline'

CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury says India "succumbed to the US pressure" by not attending the meet finalising the Iran-Pak-India gas pipeline deal.
PTI | By HT Correspondent, Kolkata
UPDATED ON OCT 01, 2007 07:26 PM IST

India "succumbed to the US pressure" by not attending the meet finalising the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline deal, CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury has said.

"India did not take part at the tripartite meeting at Tehran on September 24 to finalise the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline project, envisaging supply of natural gas via Pakistan, but for US pressure", Yechury alleged in an article in the party mouthpiece


on Monday.

"The deal has been finalised between Iran and Pakistan on Saturday. It is unwise for India to remain absent at that meeting", the CPI(M) leader, in Kolkata to attend the CPI(M) politburo and central committee meetings, said.

Alleging that the US "has been determining India's foreign policy", he said: "This has vindicated our party's observation that implications of the proposed Indo-US nuclear deal will not be limited within nuclear energy alone, but to other wide areas too".

He alleged that it was at the instance of Washington that India had voted against Iran twice at the IAEA meeting.

He said the US had been openly opposing the Indo-Iran gas pipeline project to import natural gas.

Though the External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee had said that there was no relation between the gas pipeline project and the Indo-US Nuclear deal, "in effect, it is being seen that India has been dilly-dallying on this project after succumbing to the US pressure", he said.

The daily quoted Yechury as saying, "while Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf could conclude a deal with Iran being a friendly ally of President Bush, why couldn't we?"

"Why should our foreign policy be guided at the diktat of President Bush?", he asked.

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