Withdrawal of support to UPA was a mistake: Somnath

New Delhi, April 19 (Inditop) Somnath Chatterjee has said it was a mistake by the Left parties to withdraw support to the United Progressive Alliance (UPA )government over the India-US nuclear deal last year.

The outgoing Lok Sabha speaker has revealed he had cautioned against taking such a step.

“I told them don’t give up your stand against the nuclear deal, oppose it. Say that the party will not be bound, warn the government, warn the people of the serious consequences that may be there,” the veteran communist said in an interview to NDTV.

Asked if the withdrawal of support to the UPA was a mistake like the decision not to join the government in 1996, Chatterjee said: “Yes, very much so.”

Chatterjee was expelled from the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) last year after he refused to step down as the speaker of the Lok Sabha after the Left decided to vote against a confidence motion moved by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

He said he had cautioned the Left that such a step would encourage the forces that the party has been fighting, an oblique reference to the Bharatiya Janata Party and its allies.