N-deal review would not be easy, admits Advani

Bangalore, April 21 (Inditop) The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani Tuesday admitted that the India-US nuclear deal signed by the Manmohan Singh government with the Bush administration in 2008 cannot be easily disregarded.

“A treaty signed by an earlier government cannot be easily disregarded. All these facts will be borne in mind and the new government would take a decision,” Advani told reporters here during his two-day visit to Karnataka for election campaign.

Asked if his party favoured a review of the nuclear deal to meet the country’s long-term energy demands, the party’s prime ministerial candidate said he would like to leave the decision to the next government.

“I would not like to say anything on this as governance is a continuing matter. I would like to leave it (review) to the new government. Our policy will be that the two major democracies of the world should have the best of cordial relations,” Advani pointed out.

Recalling the fallout of the Pokhran nuclear tests in May 1998 during the first BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) rule, Advani said despite sanctions against India, relations with the US were very cordial and warm.

“As the biggest democracy, India will continue to have very warm and harmonious relations with the strongest democracy in the world (the US),” Advani noted.

Regretting the stand of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and the Congress on the Pokhran tests, Advani said it was ironical that the Left parties had no objection if China or Russia went nuclear but criticised the NDA government for conducting the two nuclear tests.

“When we conducted Pokhran, Indians the world over were proud and happy. But within the country, the Left parties strongly criticised us though they never had any objection for China or Russia going nuclear,” Advani said.

“What hurt us even more was the fact then opposition leader in the Rajya Sabha Manmohan Singh equally strongly criticised us and said the government had taken an unwise step. We replied to him at that time. They said the sanctions would hurt India very badly. We said we will overcome it and we did,” Advani asserted.