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Nuclear Thread - 2
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Deal dilutes autonomy </b>
Sandhya Jain
The India-US civil nuclear deal has exposed our worst kept post-colonial secret - there is dyarchy in New Delhi with UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi calling the shots and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh executing her designs, even at the cost of national security and sovereignty. Ms Gandhi has said the deal was close to her heart without revealing why; delivered her overarching seal of approval at the Congress Parliamentary Party meet a day after Mr Singh's address to Parliament; and, skipped the public arena once Washington unveiled the emasculating nature of the deal, leaving the Government to cope with the political fallout.

What is most disturbing, however, is the manner in which domestic anxiety has degenerated into a Government-Opposition squabble.<b> The UPA's denial of the US State Department's claim that the deal stands "terminated" if India conducts a nuclear test is unconvincing. Instead of using this to scrap or rework the deal, which explicitly provides for "return of all materials, including reprocessed material covered by the agreement", the UPA has opted to lie to its own people.</b>

<b>It is sadly evident that Ms Gandhi is manipulating the UPA to subordinate India to the US-dominated world order. The nuclear deal strips India of nuclear autonomy and makes it a pawn in Washington's contests with China and Iran.</b> It targets India's right to procure enriched uranium; reprocess fuel in fast-breeder reactors; and, eventually switch to thorium as fissile material. <b>The first two stages of our nuclear cycle are visibly under attack; informed sources say Ram Setu is intended to destroy our thorium sources.

Scientists like former President APJ Abdul Kalam believe thorium is the route to energy independence; our known reserves can generate 400,000 MW electricity annually for the next four centuries. India alone has the technological expertise for thorium-based reactors and a 300 MW reactor is under regulatory clearance. If launched in the 11th Plan, it may be ready within seven years. Thorium produces up to 10,000-times less long-lived radioactive waste than uranium or plutonium, sharply reducing radiation hazards. Where is the need for India to grovel before the Nuclear Suppliers' Group for purchasing uranium?</b>

A less-known fact is that over a thousand Americans will enter India under the deal, and enjoy access to sensitive information regarding the quantum of our thorium and other natural resources. Hence, it would be appropriate for Parliament to ask if there is any other unwritten component in the treaty. Indeed, barring the Congress, which negotiated the sell out, all political parties should unequivocally declare that future regimes will not be bound to secret clauses inked by regimes that cannot face their own people.

The Left's anger cannot be trusted completely given its extreme reluctance to divorce the UPA. It is heartening that the BJP has woken up to the seriousness of the threat to national sovereignty and decided to move a no-confidence motion against the Government. While the NDA and the UNPA are obvious allies in this enterprise, minority-sensitive UPA allies like the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the DMK and even the Left will have no choice but to take an unambiguous stand on the issue.

Early national election is now looming; the BJP must atone for previous sins. The BJP should also explain why its top leaders initially approved the deal after meeting the Prime Minister; Mr Yashwant Sinha's subsequent denunciation suggests internal revolt at this unilateralism. <b>Worse, the leadership tried to help the UPA by giving an inadmissible notice about Parliament ratifying the deal, and seeking discussion under Rule 184 (rejected by the Speaker) only after in-house wrangling. </b>

Former Atomic Energy Research Board chief A Gopalakrishnan avers that Section 106 of the Hyde Act enjoins US to end nuclear cooperation<b> if India conducts a nuclear test; Section 104(a)(3)(B) denies the President power to waive Section 129 of the US Atomic Energy Act, which envisages similar termination. Hence, on testing, India has to return all material, including reprocessed material, covered by the agreement. </b>Mr Gopalakrishnan stresses that both the 123 Agreement and the Hyde Act deny India assured nuclear fuel if Washington terminates or suspends the deal, which is known to negotiators in the PMO and the Foreign Ministry. Australia's linking uranium sales to India's "legal commitment to abandon nuclear testing" validates this view.

Thus, if a nationalist Government needs further tests, all reactors, material, fuel stockpiles, reprocessed fuel, spares and technology will have to be returned to the US (possibly without a refund). <b>In monetary terms, a direct investment of Rs 250,000 crore in imported power reactors and Rs 800,000 crore in downstream industries relying on this power will go down the drain. No Government could withstand such an economic shock.</b>

It is pertinent that we could be blackmailed <b>even for refusal to obey US diktat in areas impinging on our sovereignty and national dignity, which is why Iran's nuclear programme has been smuggled into the deal.</b> Former BARC director AN Prasad thinks the 123 Agreement was a bogey to 'fix' the language of the deal. The controversial issue of testing was not directly mentioned, and the Government of India hid the fact that such areas of silence are governed by the Hyde and US Atomic Energy Acts.

The Hyde Act enjoins the American President to determine that India has provided the US and the International Atomic Energy Agency with a credible plan to separate civil and military nuclear facilities, and that India and the IAEA have completed all legal steps required prior to signature of an agreement requiring application of IAEA safeguards in perpetuity. The US President has to report to Congress about India's adherence to a strict non-proliferation regime; copies of the separation plan and agreements with IAEA and the Nuclear Suppliers' Group; and, specific measures taken by India to actively participate in US and international efforts to dissuade, isolate and if necessary sanction and contain Iran.

Shamefully, the UPA is willing to enter into an agreement against a friendly sovereign country. One shudders to think if the UPA would also insist on providing America military bases to enforce 'regime change' in Tehran. The UPA has outlived its welcome; it must go.
Acharya, You asked why is the Left so against the deal?

Pioneer, 21 Aug., 2007
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->BJP mustn't let Govt fall

The party must realise that it's least prepared for a mid-term poll, says Prafull Goradia

<b>The BJP has erred in opposing so vociferously the India-US civil nuclear deal. In public perception, its opposition is largely political. This is not the time to let the UPA Government fall.</b> The BJP needs a year or two to get its manifesto made sharp and clear before facing the national electorate. The Sangh Parivar would also need to arrive at a consensus on the prime ministerial candidate. Moreover, the State elections in Gujarat, Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh should precede the Lok Sabha election and not follow them.

<b>Why is the CPI(M) playing its cards the way it is?</b> There has always been a method in its madness - realpolitik and not ideological. <b>A Kolkata grapevine, located not far from the party headquarters, reported in late June that the nuclear agreement will not go through.</b>

<b>The CPI(M) is sensitive to Muslim sentiments. All these decades, the Bengali-speaking Muslims have stood four square behind the party. The faithful following has been soured across rural West Bengal by the Nandigram clash. Farmers and peasants have felt let down. They can no longer rely on the CPI(M) to protect their land. Signing anything with the US or even seen to be supporting an India-US deal could be playing straight into the hands of Jamiat-e-Ulema. Although the voters are over a fourth of West Bengal's electoral rolls, for the Left they comprise a third of its supporters.</b>

Kerala, which is the second bastion of the CPI(M), also poses a serious problem. Christians are upset with the Left Front Government for interfering in their schools and colleges. The community comprises over 20 per cent of the population and are more resourceful than their numbers. The Syrian Christians are wealthy and the network of churches adds up to a great deal of influence.

<b>The acquittal of Maulana Abdul Nasser Madani by the court at Coimbatore has made him a hero. Unexpectedly, he has resolved to abandon his extremism, sound reasonable and unite Muslims with Dalits. If he succeeds, he would have quite a sizable vote-bank. Why, therefore, annoy Muslims who support the CPI(M) either directly or through other parties?</b> The least that the Left can do is to be seen to sabotage an India-US deal.

While there is need to avert the threats to the CPI(M) in Kerala and West Bengal, there are opportunities elsewhere. <b>Assam, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh offer potential</b>. Bihar is ruled by a coalition which has a BJP Deputy Chief Minister. Whereas Uttar Pradesh has a Government which is seen as having come to power largely on Hindu support. The Samajwadi Party of Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav continues to enjoy Muslim support but, when out of power, followers are liable to get dispersed. The Left can aspire for some pickings. In any case, the CPI(M) must appear pro-Muslim if it expects to align with the SP.

<b>BSP leader Mayawati echoed this view last week when she said that the 123 Agreement with the US could hurt the sentiments of the minority community, which is bitterly opposed to American policy in Iraq and elsewhere</b>. The BSP has been candid while the Left Front has been cagey. But the syndrome is the same.

The fortunes of both the Congress and the BJP have declined. The emerging vacuum is being filled by the rest of the parties who comprise 48 percent or 260 seats, of the current Lok Sabha. Since the 2004 general election, the two national parties have weakened. <b>The Congress is caught in a dilemma. </b>On the one hand, the Prime Minister has proclaimed his preference as 'Muslims First', of favouring development of Muslim majority districts, of modernising madarsas et al. On the other hand, he is widely perceived as an accomplice of the US. He lost sleep over the families of Islamists involved in the recent attack on Glasgow airport. Earlier, he had warmly hosted the visit of US President George W Bush to Delhi.

The BJP has got caught in a self-contradiction. Its cadre is steeped in Hindutva for decades. Yet, it abandoned even the expression at the chintan baithak at Goa in 2004. Earlier it had lost power in the general election despite offering to employ two lakh Urdu teachers. Committed Hindus, its only permanent supporters, find the party's silence on anti-Hindu issues and incidents, as deafening. A Hindu party in search of Muslim votes!

<b>If the Left Front were to withdraw support to the UPA Government, the obvious consequence appears to be a mid-term poll.</b> Its early advent would be inopportune for the BJP. <b>On current indications, it would lose seats which, in turn, could bring a 'Third Front' to power. Whether the Prime Minister would be Mr Prakash Karat, Ms Mayawati or Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav or someone else is anybody's guess.</b> But it would be neither Mr Rajnath Singh nor Mr Manmohan Singh. A coalition without a national party leading it would also be undesirable.


No comments.
<b>National consensus imperative on N-deal</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->More heat. Less light. More confusion. Less clarity. Only those endowed with clairvoyant insight or intuitive understanding can make sense out of the cacophonous chorus inside and outside Parliament. Not one in a hundred grasps the complexity, intricacy and scientific jargon of the nuclear deal and 123 Agreement. Varying degrees of ignorance are on rampant display.

So, how does one find one’s way out of this nuclear deal maze? The adamantine and worrying fact is that the nuclear deal has now become a political issue. Parliament is divided, the country is also witnessing a breakdown of the 60-year-old consensus on foreign policy. It is for the government to repair this grave damage. I, for one, get the distinct impression that members of the Congress are groping in the dark. The media is having a ball. Yesterday, an editorial in the Hindustan Times was not so gently critical of Dr Manmohan Singh. The Hindu had a blistering editorial yesterday. It was unsparing in its disapproval of the Prime Minister’s handling of this matter. Mr Prakash Karat’s article was even more strident.

The debate on the nuclear deal in Parliament should cause a break in the nuclear clouds hovering over Sansad Bhavan and beyond.

<b>The UPA allies have not gone public but are obviously uncomfortable. They do not relish the idea of a mid-term election. Not many parties do. Those who think or wish that the UPA government will fall or that Dr Manmohan Singh will resign are mixing hope with facts. The UPA government may be wounded but not mortally. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is unlikely to resign. Nor is he going to be dumped. I say this with utmost respect, but I was surprised by his remarks to a Kolkata daily and a well known weekly magazine. He is a man who uses words with care and precision. Then why in his 76th year did he decide to embrace indiscretion? Why did the mild mannered Prime Minister go ballistic — "take it or leave it," "so be it"? Totally out of character. The interview to the weekly magazine was both baffling and bizarre. "Havans," "higher power," "destiny." The television is a cruel mechanism. It is merciless in focusing on "body language." The Prime Minister seems to have lost the well known spring in his walk.</b>

The opposition in Parliament to the nuclear deal is not likely to disappear. The Left parties have taken a principled stand. So have the BJP and the UNPA. They do not support the deal. They go much further. They are opposed to growing American influence which is doing injury to India’s foreign policy. They ask: Why has government not made any statement on the continuing horror and tragedy in Iraq? Why is the sinister Hyde Act not being openly talked about? The other parties too have similar concerns. These must be addressed.

I do not, for a moment, agree with those who say that India is being sold. We are a great nation, a great people and a great civilisation. No one can browbeat us or even push us around. The proud people of India will never, repeat, never, tolerate a subservient foreign policy. Unfortunately, the impression has been created that the Prime Minister is bending backwards to accommodate President Bush. This impression is widespread. A corrective is needed.

The spokesmen of the government maintain that the deal cannot be re-negotiated. Why in the name of heaven not? Read history — US President Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924) signed the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. The US Senate shot it down. Mr Wilson did not resign. More recently, Bill Clinton was hellbent to sell the CTBT to the world. When he took it to Senate it too shot it down. Mr Clinton did not quit. The European Union had a referendum on the Maastricht Treaty. France and Denmark voted against the draft. The whole thing was re-negotiated and an amicable solution was found. Treaties, agreements, deals etc., can always be re-negotiated, re-worked.

Will this adversely affect our international image? Not if we go about it the right way.

<b>In the final analysis, the Prime MInister of India is answerable to the people and Parliament of India. Not to any superpower. Indian national interest is paramount.</b>

<b>The nuclear deal, dovetailed with the Hyde Act, has one very vital domestic dimension. The 150 million Muslims of India are totally opposed to the nuclear deal in its present form. The Left parties, the BJP, the emerging Third Front cannot but be mindful of this factor. This, I presume, is also the position of the vast majority of members of the UPA.</b>

What is the way out? Take all political parties into confidence. Tell President Bush that we have to carry Parliament and the people with us. We are a democracy. We cannot railroad. For great countries the "loss of face" syndrome does not apply. Statesmen should not despair. They should not only contemplate problems, but find answers for them. The UPA government is not short of talent, or diplomatic experience. As I have often said, crisis management is our forté. Here is a momentous challenge for our diplomacy and foreign policy. Let us face it and overcome it as a united people and a united Parliament.

The Prime Minister must work to achieve national consensus on nuclear deal
<b>India uranium deal 'to have safeguards'</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Uranium sold by Australia to India would not be available for use in weapons, Treasurer Peter Costello said.

"I think the decision that Australia has made in relation to selling uranium to India will come with safeguards to ensure that it's not finding its way into weapons," Mr Costello told reporters before a cabinet meeting in Sydney.

"And I think those safeguards will be very important to ensure that uranium is put to peaceful purposes."

Prime Minister John Howard last week announced it had reached a conditional agreement to sell uranium to India although it is not a signatory to the nuclear non-proliferation treaty (NPT).

The exports to India will be subject to strict conditions, including guarantees uranium would only be used for power generation and <span style='color:red'>regular inspections</span>.

The Nuclear Suppliers Group will also have to approve the agreement.
<b>AEC chief Kakodkar to attend IAEA meet next month </b>
Now lets see what Left will do?
<b>Australia, India Free Trade Agreement</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The Australian newspaper said. A submission prepared by Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, and supported by cabinet, has outlined the new approach which would mirror Canberra’s opening towards China in the 1980s and an earlier embrace of Japan, the paper said.

Discussion of the Free Trade Agreement comes one week after Canberra agreed to sell uranium to India for energy use, despite New Delhi not being a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
<b>On day Karat serves notice, his friends in China begin work on 31 new N-reactors</b>

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->NEW DELHI, AUGUST 20: Last Saturday, when the CPM Politburo rejected the 123 agreement and told the UPA government not to proceed on the nuclear deal, their comrades in Beijing launched the first nuclear power plant in northeastern China to kickstart a massive plan to build 31 reactors by 2020. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
There is a difference, China is doing on its own, China is not depending on others, but in case of India, they are looking for foreign contractors to work so that ruling govt can make money. Why not develop indigenous technology.

Check this, another fool in US who had not only have foot in mouth disease, but excellent example of MEA, how they operate and fools appointments all over globe.

<b>Uproar in Parliament over rediff interview</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Both Houses of Parliament were rocked today over Indian Ambassador to US Ronen Sen's remarks to rediff.com terming the opponents of the nuclear deal <b>''headless chicken''</b>.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>Queasy BJP keeps sitting on the fence
- Advani reveals party dilemma as he dubs Left ultimatum to government ‘shadow-boxing’</b>
Sonia and Advani at the Central Hall of Parliament on Monday. (PTI)

New Delhi, Aug. 20: The BJP’s dilemma about adopting too harsh a stance over the nuclear deal shone through again today as L.K. Advani focused his attack on the Left rather than the government.

The former Union home minister, keen to distance his party from the communist critics of the Indo-US agreement, described the Left’s ultimatum to the Manmohan Singh ministry as “shadow-boxing”.

But the BJP’s own quandary about how strongly to attack the nuclear deal, which some of its senior leaders are said to support, was evident even at the party’s regular news conference.

The eloquent Arun Jaitley spoke not on the 123 Agreement but on Ottavio Quattrocchi, accusing the CBI of helping the Bofors accused evade justice.

Elsewhere, Advani stressed the BJP’s historical commitment to making India a nuclear power and contrasted it with the communists’ alleged support to China during the 1962 conflict.

“The Jan Sangh had said in its 1966 manifesto that we will make India a nuclear power whenever we get a chance,” he told a party farmers’ rally, where the scheduled protest against wheat and pulses scams got overshadowed by the political crisis in Delhi.

The former BJP president went on to mention the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government’s Pokhran tests in the face of US pressure.

He said little about the Indo-US pact’s contents beyond suggesting that it put curbs on India’s nuclear weapons programme.

Although he mentioned the possibility of a snap poll, he quickly added that his party was not keen to see the government fall at this stage.

The BJP had announced that Vajpayee would attend the rally, raising expectations that he might reveal his mind on the crisis, but the former Prime Minister did not turn up.

Police detained Advani, party president Rajnath Singh and a few other BJP leaders for half an hour as they led a farmers’ march to Parliament in protest against the government’s agriculture policies.

“The farmers of the country urgently need a new deal, but it seems the government is busy with other deals,” said a BJP memorandum to the Prime Minister, signed by Vajpayee, Advani, Jaswant Singh and Rajnath.

The memorandum warned that the farm sector would collapse if immediate measures were not taken to address the crisis in agriculture.

The BJP sought a joint parliamentary committee probe into why import orders had been issued for wheat at a price higher than one the government had rejected in May.

Ramana and Acharya,

After reading the articles of Seema Mustafa and Natwar Singh's articles initially I thought they were spinning too much out Nuclear Deal. However, I think you guys are right. There seems to be a start to a big movement to move the muslim votes away from congress. Left and all the disgruntled elements of various parties are trying to create Left+Third front pitch for the next elections.

There are too many psy-ops on TV as well towards this aspect. On Saturday morning (EST time), I saw a program on Headlines Today(AAjTak's English sister) about Indo-Israel co-operation. The program wen beyond the ususal milatary co-operation/Barak etc. They are talking about UPA's extra thrust towards Israel at the cost of IMs sensitivities.. This program went on for about 20 minutes.

If they succeed, it will be a big political loss to INC and we don't know what will it turn into for Mayawati and BJP. It would be very interesting to see such a polarization but I am still not convinced that they will succeed.
Thanks for the compliment Muppalla. It makes me strive more to understand the issues. The aha moment came on Saturday when I tried to think why is she writing what she is writing.

Actually there are tectonic shifts underway if we pause and think about it.

- A national interests based Muslim political movement can take shape.
- Pseudo-secularism might bite the dust.
- INC might get what it deserves for keeping the nation hostage to its vote bank for 60 years.
- The urban elite might realize that the BJP, the non-DIE, might be right after all.
- History might get written the correct way.
- US and world politics might even change- Middle East and Oil.
- Left movement could also whither away as its based on fake secularism and syncretism.
- True liberal movement based on Indian sensitivity could emerge.

More as I can think of.


The Left and others who are trying this approach are actually targeting the short term gains in the form of a new front for the next elections. All they are trying is to create a couple of Samajwadi Parties as part of the Third Front. Your views seems to be a long term(it might take a decade) based on the solidification of this kind of polarization.

<!--QuoteBegin-ramana+Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM-->QUOTE(ramana @ Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Thanks for the compliment Muppalla. It makes me strive more to understand the issues. The aha moment came on Saturday when I tried to think why is she writing what she is writing.

We need to watch this space. So far we have seen about four articles of this nature. One from Left, Seema Mustafa, Natwar Singh and an un-named news report some where. Seema Mustafa types are virulently anti Indian ethos that are based on pre-Mughal period. They act as proxy to Left politics(educated and intellectual Muslims are part of Left for convinience).

<!--QuoteBegin-ramana+Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM-->QUOTE(ramana @ Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Actually there are tectonic shifts underway if we pause and think about it.
I wish your thinking comes true.

<!--QuoteBegin-ramana+Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM-->QUOTE(ramana @ Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->A national interests based Muslim political movement can take shape.

I couldn't grasp this conclusion. I am trying since last two days. How the above polarization could lead to this? Even if it has to happen there should be some leadership which is not existing at this time in IMs. The pulls and pressures are too many against such a movement.

<!--QuoteBegin-ramana+Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM-->QUOTE(ramana @ Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Pseudo-secularism might bite the dust.

Based on current politics, Vajpayee, JS and PVNR brand of leadeship needs to suceed in at least two national parties and few regional parties.

<!--QuoteBegin-ramana+Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM-->QUOTE(ramana @ Aug 21 2007, 10:57 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Left movement could also whither away as its based on fake secularism and syncretism.

This is extremely difficult to predict with the kind of growth we are seeing in China. This is China's proxy in India and there needs to be min-independence movement to get rid of this. Left is everywhere like God in India. Local politics, history writing and NGO movements and large sections of media and beauracracy.

May be my visualization is not based on thinking big.
Right on cue! Looks like radicalization is underway with INC connivance.

From Pioneer, 22 August 2007
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->How Islamists are testing India's tolerance

Islamists are testing the tolerance level of Indians. A number of examples can be cited. Their recent violent attack on Bangladeshi writer Taslima Nasreen is one. Change is the law of nature and there are no exceptions to it, not even in Quranic Law - the Shariat. Yet, there are millions of Islamic fundamentalists and other Islamists who shun reforms.

Today, in the entire world outside of the ummah, Islam is hated. Muslims are most unwelcome in the US, Europe and Australia. In China's Sikiang province they are dealt with a heavy hand. In more than 24 countries, they are in a warlike situation. In Iraq, for months now, there are more than 100 casualties a day. Similar conditions are reported from Afghanistan and the NWFP in Pakistan. The only Muslim majority State of India, Jammu & Kashmir, too, is gripped by Islamic terrorism.

An insightful administrator of colonial India had once noted on the file that "Muslims are a tyrant majority and troublesome minority". It can safely be said that Muslim society has lost 60 years of opportunity of reforms in independent India, the most favourable country. There may be numerous reasons for this.

Lack of reformist leadership, ghettoisation, Muslim votebank politics and the grip of fundamentalists over their societal behaviour. Muslim political parties, too, are unfavourable to a reformist leadership.

<b>The Congress has long fed the Muslim society with ever increasing appeasements. Before 1947, it did so in the name of Hindu-Muslim unity and afterwards for getting votes. Its unity efforts resulted in Partition and bloodbath of innocent people. Its votebank measures resulted in intensively competitive votebank politics.

It was by sheer chance that the Congress came to power in May 2004 and embarked upon the appeasement policy yet again. The first task it performed after coming to power was ordering repeal of POTA. The result of its competitive votebank policy was seen in the Kerala Assembly which unanimously passed a resolution for the release of Maulana Madni. This week, the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) has demanded the enactment of law for women as per the Shariat. It has not done any good to Muslims in the past nor is it likely to do so in the future.</b>

Through violent activities, the Muslim society is drifting away from the mainstream. After all, any act of riot, violence or terrorism leaves an impression on Indians. Recall, when Afzal Guru, chief conspirator of the attack on Parliament, was given death sentence by Supreme Court after a three-tier judicial process. Objections were raised by Congress Chief Minister of J&K Ghulam Nabi Azad. Now, he may die in jail but will not be hanged. One can also recall that it was this attack over which India and Pakistan were on the brink of war.

Coming to Taslima Nasreen. She went to Hyderabad to release the Telugu edition of her book. The Muslim fundamentalist organisation MIM organised an attack on her at the Press Club. Video clippings show MIM people attacking her and the hosts trying to protect her. To cap it all, the police registered a case against Taslima for creating communal disharmony and hurting Islam. The cops gave in to the wishes of MIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi.

The Minority Commission condemned the incident but, at the same time, recommended not to extend Taslima's visa. Taslima advocated for women's rights. Her book Lajja was a hit. The Andhra Pradesh High Court, while dealing with the PIL filed against her, issued notices to Police Commissioner of Hyderabad, Union Home Secretary and State Home Secretary. The MIM leaders regretted that they could not kill her. They threatened that if she came to Hyderabad again, she would be done to death. Till now, nobody has apologised to her for the security lapse. In Bangladesh she is unwelcome. She wants an Indian citizenship. Surprisingly, the so-called champions of human rights and freedom of expression are quiet this time.

A couple of years back, a Danish newspaper published a series of cartoons of Prophet Mohammed provoking worldwide Islamist protests. India had nothing to do with the cartoons. Yet, protesters in Lucknow attacked and killed traders. An Islamist leader offered Rs 51 crore to anyone who would kill the cartoonist.

Salman Rushdie wrote Satanic Verses. Iran's Islamists vowed to pay huge money to the one who killed Rushdie. The Japanese translator of the book was killed. Publishers and booksellers, too, were in the firing line. India did nothing except banning the book. Many people in India were killed in protest demonstrations. That is how they resist reforms that come their way.

Dont know how accurate but here is HS Vyas of Pioneer, 22 August 2007.

Some answers to preplexing questions.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Confidence gave PM teeth</b>

<b>Prime Minister Manmohan Singh threatening to resign and daring the Left to withdraw support </b>was an unparallel happening. Singh showed guts by taking a stand on the 123 Agreement. <b>But why do you think he challenged the Left?</b> The reason lies in self-confidence. <b>It was thought that Left would abandon its opposition in the face of such a massive stand-off. But Karat, instead of getting nervous, retaliated.</b> Mulayam and VP Singh could not hide their glee. Mulayam said in Lucknow that the Left Front should not bark but bite. VP held talks with the Left and later held a Press conference demanding Singh's resignation and advising the Left to withdraw support.

In the coming week, discussions on the Agreement will take place in Parliament. <b>But, the Left will not vote against the Government along with the BJP.</b> CPM leaders Jyoti Basu and Buddhadeb Bhattacharya will not let the Government fall. <b>The Prime Minister has full faith in West Bengal's Communist leaders.</b> Most UPA allies are behind the Agreement. Simply put, much like the Left, the clouds will thunder but not burst.

Calculated challenge

<b>But why did the Prime Minister suddenly challenge the Left?</b> After all, there was nothing new in the Left stand. It is their oft-stated position that they will not support the Agreement and want a discussion in Parliament. No leader went beyond this. Nobody said they will vote against the Government in Parliament or withdraw support. <b>The crisis was created by the PM himself. By daring to withdraw support, he forced Karat to retaliate. It was the PMO who briefed journalists about Singh's offer to quit and it was the PMO which called a particular journalist to give a political interview to a newspaper. Why did Singh do that? Leaders say it was a calculated challenge, discussed threadbare with Sonia.</b>

Karat in kill mode?

<b>Karat is targetting the Congress and if a senior leader is to be believed, the Left is aiming at finishing it off. By making the Agreement a big political issue, the CPM has put the Congress in a Catch 22 situation: America or Muslim votes? With all Muslims being against any Indo-US relationship, the Left is trying to show up the Congress as a villain. Last Sunday, Karat questioned the need for an Indo-US relationship. "We do not want friendship or defence co-operation with America," he said, pandering to the Muslim votebank. </b>The stance is much like Mulayam and Naidu's political strategy.

<b>Karat has been working for an alternative for the next General Election. He has hinted about a Third Front. And if that is to be a reality, the Left would have to work alongside Mulayam and Naidu.</b> Karat, the leader insisted, considers Congress a liability which needs to be shed sooner than later. In this context, he opined, the Congress is on a suicidal path. <b>"It is a mistake on the part of the PM and Sonia that without creating a conducive environment they are pushing for the Agreement.</b>

Congmen wonder

<b>There is widespread opinion within the Congress that the party should have created a favourable mood for the Agreement before going for it. In Indira Gandhi's time, the entire organisation used to be activated for important foreign policy matters, like it was done before the treaty with USSR. Not only the entire CWC but also the Congress Chief Ministers and office-bearers were told to create an awareness. </b>Meetings were held and rallies taken out on the issue. <b>Today, the party's general secretaries and even External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee avoid talking about the 123 Agreement. When the CWC endorsed its approval for the Agreement, Mukherjee was not even there.</b> Instead of making the party understand the import of such a sensitive issue, he went on a foreign tour. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had to brief the CWC. <b>Surprisingly, National Security Advisor M K Narayanan has been doing all the marketing among Congress leaders as well as the BJP and the media. This Monday, besides Narayanan, Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon also became active. He briefed the Congress MPs about the Agreement. </b>

Support there

Do Congress leaders consider friendship with America in the interest of India? <b>Most CWC members and AICC office-bearers say that the Agreement is good. In the CWC meeting three leaders raised the question about America's Hyde Act.</b> Both Narayanan and the PM were quick to allay their fears. And, as a leader later said: <b>"We were outcastes in the world community. With the Agreement, that untouchability will end. Nuclear techniques and supplies will be made available by the Nuclear Supply Group. We can fight the terrorists with US co-operation." But then why do these leaders shy away from saying such things publicly? The leader's reply was: "First the party organisation should decided how to propagate our stand."</b>

Manmohan's twin strategy

<b>Why did Prime Minister Manmohan Singh choose a Kolkata-based newspaper for his controversial interview in which he dared the Left to withdraw support to the Government over the 123 Agreement?</b> Sources say, Singh did so because, as opposed to the Left leaders at the Centre, he felt the Bengal leadership was more practical. Also, <b>Congress strategists felt there was resentment in the CPM over Karat's leadership. People like Jyoti Basu and Buddhadeb Bhattacharya are against 'hardliner' Karat. Already, within the politburo questions are simmering over his leadership. Besides, the decision on support withdrawal is not in Karat's hands.</b> The politburo will not allow such a decision.

Interesting so its a game to the finish. MMS and Sg want to split the CPIM and have moved with full force to corner Karat. And Karat wants to finish of the INC by removing its Muslim votebank. Then how is the INC different form the BJP? Are they secular Hindus? Is there such a thing?
Recall I remarked in the Karat artcile that the debate is about engaging the USA.

A deeper analysis by Ashok Malik in Pioneer, 22 August 2007

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Tomorrow never dies

Ashok Malik

<b>The India-US civil nuclear cooperation agreement is just one element of a grand bargain that Japan and America are offering India. It is to the credit of the CPI(M) that only it has realised the implications</b>

<b>It is a strange week in Delhi.</b> Communists don the garb of ultra-nationalists. India's formerly Right-wing party becomes an add-on of the Left Front. The accidental descent into an election that nobody - with the exception of Ms Mayawati and the BSP - is ready for is a clear and present danger.

<b>In a week like this, only the big picture can provide reassurance.</b> The small picture, alas, is simply too smudged.

<b>While they are the villains of the day, Mr Prakash Karat and the CPI(M) need to be thanked for having brought into the open the philosophy behind the India-US nuclear deal.</b> Yes, this deal is about energy security and containing greenhouse gas emissions from thermal fuel sources and such noble and good intentions. <b>Yet, slipped into the 123 Agreement is the blueprint for 21st century security architecture.</b>

By openly opposing the relationship with America - and by aligning their position with that of the Chinese Government -<b> India's Communist parties have made a public debate on an overarching foreign policy decision simply unavoidable.</b>

<b>It is now becoming increasingly untenable to pretend that India's economic rise</b> is simply a matter of higher GDP, better trade figures, more outsourcing contracts - and <b>has no strategic implications</b>. That may be the view preferred by the Indian ostrich, but the rest of the world is not looking at it that way.<b> It is seeing India as a potential counterweight to China, at least as part of a mutually balancing concert of powers that would include, of course, both Asian giants and others such as the US and Russia.</b>

<b>In an extreme situation, India could have a role in a containment of China, though that eventuality seems far away.</b> In any case, <b>the very need to contain China would depend on how China and its polity evolve over the coming decade or two.</b> To reflect on that right now would be to gaze into a crystal ball. <b>For the moment, the world is only hedging its bets, which is why it is courting India.</b>

The rise of China and what India should do vis-à-vis its northern neighbour are obviously exercising various groups of Indians. They are also the subject of cogitation in other countries. <b>In offering India the civilian nuclear deal, the Republican Administration in the US has shown its cards.

In Australia, the degree of the national economy's dependence on China - Chinese factories are hungry for Australian commodities - has caused some disquiet.</b> There is a perception, particularly to the right of the political spectrum, that this will compromise Canberra's ability to maintain an independent foreign policy, free of Beijing's influence.

<b>It is this sentiment that is driving strategic affairs pundits in Australia to advocate sale of uranium to India.</b> The point was made, for instance, in Widening Horizons: Australia's New Relationship with India, a paper brought out by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in May 2007.

<b>In Japan </b>- as the current visit of that country's Prime Minister, accompanied by 150 odd businessmen, makes clear - <b>India is seen as the next Asian manufacturing hub. The 1,500 km long Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor is, essentially, envisaged as a 10-year project for the transplanting of Japanese manufacturing facilities.</b>

<b>Japanese investment in India is the economic analogue of the nuclear deal or the American promise to provide India military hardware worthy of a future power. Why is Japan doing it? For one, it has a historically unsteady relationship with China. Second, Japan is an ageing society and moving its factories to India is part of an enormous retirement plan.</b>

If it wants to retain the factories at home, <b>Japan will have to open itself up to immigrant workers and managers</b> - many of whom may be Chinese. <b>It is looking at a more agreeable alternative - outsourcing manufacturing to India.</b>

It is not television sets and mini-CD players that Japan wants to make in the DMIC. <b>From high-end industrial electronics to elements of aerospace manufacture, very sophisticated technology transfer is on offer. The Japanese are also investing heavily in infrastructure.</b>

<b>There are no free lunches in economics, no free dinners in diplomacy.</b> In return for Japanese investment, Australian uranium and American weaponry, India would not need to go to war with China - but it would need to make small, subtle and unavoidable choices. It is to the credit of the CPI(M) that it has understood the contours of the grand bargain and made its position clear.

In no country do complex foreign policy issues become the bread and butter of domestic, provincial politicians. India is not going to be an exception. As such, one cannot expect every member or party in Parliament to have an informed, enlightened view on the fork India finds itself at.

Yet, the role of the BJP in the entire discourse has been a trifle disappointing. As a nationalist party, which led a government that crafted the framework of 'modern diplomacy', surely it could do better than merely mimic Marxists and give them certificates of patriotism? Today, the credit for the deal lies with the Congress - even though it built on the gains of the NDA years - and the Opposition space lies with the Left. The BJP is everywhere - and nowhere.

<b>Where will the Karat-Manmohan Singh brinkmanship on the nuclear deal lead to?</b> In terms of ancillary negotiations and the wider foreign policy roadmap, <b>it could delay matters rather than reverse the course. India's direction is inevitable; the Left is defending a lost cause.</b>

Not that there isn't a precedent. Between the Spanish-American War and Pearl Harbour, 1898 and 1941, the US swung in and out of the international system. It saw intense internal debate over whether its economic muscle now obligated it to be a global power - or whether old-style isolationism was still feasible.

In 1919, at the end of World War I, President Woodrow Wilson helped frame the Treaty of Versailles, and helped found the League of Nations as part of 20th century security architecture. The US Senate, however, snubbed Wilson, rejected the treaty and kept America out of the League.

Wilson warned another war would engulf Europe within a generation. Provincial politicians, American exceptionalists and hyper-nationalists thought he was talking nonsense. Two decades later, Wilson was proved prescient. The US walked into World War II and recognised that this time there was no going back.

Do all aspirant powers go through such existential dilemmas? The big picture, remember, does look reassuring!


Very interesting that he had to open his mouth now. What was he doing all these days? Also note the ref to Woodrow Wilson by him and Notwar Singh. Maybe they all are attending 'education' seminars at IIHC!
I find Muddy who has a very low opinion of the present Prime Minister of India desisting from using his pet adjectives.
However, on the national front it would be good to go in for a mid term election. It should determine which way the nation should go as today we have the common perception that the Left is always putting a break and slowing down the economic and social progress of the nation. Those following the media will agree that within the Left front itself; there is major difference of opinion regarding withdrawal of support from the present Government.

Another aspect of this drama which we should all take note of is the role of the BJP in the past and its present position on the nuclear issue. It is the BJP led government which started the groundwork for strategic interaction with the United States of America which has been carried forward by the present Government. Their present opposition to the deal may cost them heavily if there is a General Election.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Another aspect of this drama which we should all take note of is the role of the BJP in the past and its present position on the nuclear issue. It is the BJP led government which started the groundwork for strategic interaction with the United States of America which has been carried forward by the present Government.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
I am surprised you are such a knowledgeable person, missed key discussion on nuclear issue. BJP/NDA started discussion on nuclear deal, but main question is what they were discussing and what UPA had promised. Even USA diplomat gladly said, UPA had given what BJP/NDA refused to give. Could you tell us and enlighten us what this US officially is happy about. So now why government is refusing debate in parliament and bringing all issue in front, why they are so scared of debate and vote.

So your logic of bjp and Congress is way off. I will like to compare draft from BJP/NDA and Congress/UPA. Before saying all were apples.

Regarding Moron Singh your esteemed PM, I have low opinion because he had not shown any sign which give confidence, in place of discussion on nuclear issue, useless PM dragged Hindus ethos and trying to divert discussion by insulting Hindu religious practice, any sane person will never try, only who have some weakness will take such route, Now question is what esteemed Moron Singh is hiding.

Ravishji, time had changed, it is not same world where whatever media or government press release or Gestapo will say, people will believe. We read and understand what is going on. Look at India’ Ambassador, a diplomat’s Stupidity, he was insulting elected Members of Parliament. I can understand he was saying what Moron office told him to say, at the end bucks stop at PMO.

What US is doing, they are doing best for their interest, which is good, Now question is what Indian non-elected PM is doing? Are you sure?
Are you sure it will not be another Shimla agreement or J&K 1948 resolution which will bite future of India for ever. Leader bhakti is good to some extent, later watch action and consequence.

Enjoy reading this telegrapgh article - Now you know why I have low opinion of PM
<b>US-INDIA NUCLEAR DEAL GENERATES VEHEMENT OPPOSITION IN INDIAN PARLIAMENT & PUBLIC DEBATE: An Analysis</b> <!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>The Indian Prime Minister for some uncanny reasons was not really forthcoming on the progress of negotiations of the Deal as they became more complex and vexing. The whole process was mishandled in the sense that on such a sensitive issue as “nuclear programs” which are India’s lexicons of power, the Indian Prime Minister should have widened the spread of consensual discussions </b>with political parties, the scientific community and the strategic community. He did not do so.

<b>The whole process was confined to the precincts of the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) generating an environment where more details were available in Washington than in New Delhi</b>. Differences and pressures had commenced in early 2006 itself on the separation plan and the issue of including FBR program in the civil list.
The paper quoted above carried detailed excerpts of a very dismissive response by a <b>junior PMO bureaucrat to Dr. Kakodkar going public on the “shifting of goal posts” by USA. </b> This was unwarranted as the Indian public reposed greater trust in the Indian nuclear scientists who brought about independently India’s nuclear weapons program.  The Prime Minister should have restrained the PMO bureaucracy from such dismissive responses as it is not the sole repository of India’s strategic wisdom and foresight.

Symptomatic of the above has been the uproar in Parliament today generated by statements by the Indian Ambassador in USA Ronen Sen alluding to the opponents of the Deal in India and the Parliament as responses made by “headless chickens” etc and other disparaging remarks.

<b>The scribe who quoted Ambassador Sen has stood by his remarks and disputed the Ambassador’s contention that he was misquoted.</b>

India can do without “committed diplomats and bureaucrats” delving into domains that do not fall within the purview of their official duties.  It <b>is not their duty to defend the Deal and they should have left it to the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister to defend it</b>.


The US-India Nuclear Deal finalization should have been a landmark event and a watershed in US-India relations. <span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>Regrettably, the way it has been mismanaged by an obdurate Indian Prime Minister with total disregard to consensual national approaches has robbed it of its sheen. </span>

<b>There was no logical reason for the Indian Prime Minister to indulge in undue secrecy during the negotiations of the US-India Nuclear Deal. Some suggest that cloaking it with a veil of secrecy was an Indian suggestion. </b>

The negativities that have been generated in the last two years in India’s official handling of the US-India Nuclear Deal and connected foreign policy issues may affect the future course of US-India Strategic Partnership, too. 

Ravishji, above is common feeling.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> <b>Show us safeguards first, Japan tells India </b>
Shobori Ganguli | New Delhi
At a time when the India-US civilian nuclear deal is negotiating a turbulent sea on the domestic front, Japan on Wednesday made it more than apparent that its own future plans to enter into nuclear cooperation with India would be predicated on how India winds its way through the US deal at the IAEA.   

"We have to examine the India-US deal thoroughly and carefully. It may take us time to come to a decision," said Japanese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mitsuo Sakaba. Even as the Left kept the heat on against India-specific negotiations at the IAEA, Sakaba clearly said, "Negotiations between the IAEA and India for safeguards would be the key for us," adding, Japan would "want to see what those safeguards look like."

For Japan, the main hurdle in a US-like deal with India is the fact that India, despite being a nuclear power, is not a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty. <b>Given Japan's collective national memory of nuclear weapons, the Japanese political and diplomatic class is divided on the issue of nuclear powers entering into civilian nuclear cooperation</b>. As an official put it, "We do not have doubts about the concrete aspects of the (India-US) deal. T<b>his is an issue on which Japanese people have deep sentiments.</b> At least from the perspective of Japanese national sentiment any possible cooperation between the two countries which have tested nuclear weapons would be a definite no."

However, a more pragmatic arm of Japanese policy-makers believes India-specific safeguards at the IAEA could end India's untouchability for good. For Japan, as part of its Cold Earth 50 initiative, pushing for safe, sustainable, non-polluting energy is a priority and civilian nuclear energy cooperation the natural byword. What makes India a "unique problem" for Japan is the fact that the former is a non-NPT signatory nuclear power. Japanese officials say, "On this issue we want a debate within Japan taking into account all factors, including India's growing energy requirements, Indo-Japanese ties, and future environment challenges."
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> <b>Show us safeguards first, Japan tells India </b>
San Sakaba should be sent to address safety concerns at Indian Point.
Don't be fooled by the "Indian" in the name here - it's just 25 miles north of NYC

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