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The JPC impasse

The Indo-U.S. civil nuclear deal, as everyone will agree, is of utmost national importance, and needs to be examined threadbare by not only the government and its allies but also by the opposition. The government’s repeated refusal to constitute a JPC to examine the deal on the plea that never has a joint parliamentary committee been constituted on international agreements raises doubts in the minds of those who are concerned about the many grey areas in the 123 agreement and the implications of the Hyde Act.

A general discussion on the floor of the House cannot address and answer all the vital points. Instead of standing on prestige, the government should, in the overall national interest, agree to the democratic suggestion of the opposition.

S. Chidambaresa Iyer,

Chennai

* * *

If the UPA is confident of selling the nuclear treaty to the nation, it should face all the challenges that are associated with it. If the NDA wants a JPC on the issue, so be it. If the deal is indeed flawless, there should be no problem in getting it approved. When the UPA leaders are ready to address the NDA’s concerns, why should they resist the constitution of a JPC?

Ankit Jain,

Hisar

* * *

The BJP is back to its tactic of pressing its demand by stalling the proceedings of the House. When the government has agreed to address the opposition’s concerns on the nuclear deal, what is the point in killing the precious time of the House?

Bishal Das,

New Delhi

* * *

The External Affairs Minister is trying hard to convince the opposition and has also indicated the government’s readiness to sit with it and sort out the differences. Instead of disturbing the functioning of Parliament, the NDA should watch the developments and act responsibly.

E. Sivasankaran,

Coimbatore

* * *

The government has clearly said there is no provision in the Constitution for a JPC on an international agreement. If the opposition is serious about national security, it should accept the government’s offer to discuss the deal in Parliament.

Senthil Saravana Durai,

Vazhavallan

* * *

The issue is not an internal matter of the UPA and the Left parties. It is a national issue. Hence Parliament must be taken into confidence. This can be done only if a JPC is constituted.

Did not the Prime Minister, who initially maintained that the deal had the Cabinet’s approval and international treaties did not need Parliament’s approval, change his stand to accommodate the Left parties’ concerns?

K.R.P. Gupta,

New York

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