Left looking for face-saver on Iran

New Delhi, Nov 17 | Updated: Nov 18 2005, 05:30am hrs
The Left parties are holding a crucial meeting on Friday morning to chalk out their strategy for the coming winter session of Parliament, with emphasis on pressuring the Manmohan Singh government to defer its vote on the IAEA resolution against Irans nuclear programme in Vienna next week.

The meeting will be attended by CPI-M general secretary Prakash Karat, CPI leaders AB Bardhan, and D Raja and Abani Roy from RSP.

The Left leaders had earlier threatened to take up the matter in Parliament and ask for a vote on the issue. But CPI MP Gurudas Dasgupta and CPI-M MP Basudev Acharya have given notice for a Lok Sabha discussion on Indias stand on the Iran vote at the IAEA under Rule 193 which involves a short discussion on the issue and no voting.

The move has certainly given the government some respite. The Left, along with Janata Dal (S) and the Samajwadi Party at Lucknow last week, had warned the government that together they had more than 100 MPs, and could force the government to change its vote at IAEA.

Speaking on the issue, CPI national secretary D Raja said,We want the government to change its stand on Iran. We have expressed our views and violation of CMP will not be tolerated.