As of today, the UPA and Left have agreed on a compromise – one that puts the nuclear deal on hold.

Does this mean that the nuclear deal is dead. Clearly no. Because the next steps are to engage the NSG or the Nuclear Suppliers Group – a loose consortium of 40 nations – to allow Uranium supplies to be made to India.

Of course, any delays will give China more lobbying time with the NSG – to ensure they dont ratify the treaty with India as has been stated in the media. Of course, that should make our Left happy.

Of course, India shouldn’t get its own flavor of McCarthy-ism. Dissent is good when it involves healthy debate – that after all, is the essence of democracy. So I would cautiously welcome the fact-finding committee – but my concern is that when an opposition is based primarily on doctrinal grounds as opposed to real facts – what “facts” would allay the Left fears.

I don’t state this lightly. I was recently watching an edition of “We, the People” – a show hosted by Burkha Dutt on NDTV – and Nilotpal Basu from CPI(M) was representing the Left. His whole argument throughout the debate were the following:

  • India will be made a second class country to follow the United States in its dirty deeds
  • The nuclear deal is not a deal but a strategic pact between India and the United States
  • India’s foreign policy will be decided by the US Senate once the deed is done
  • India will be a stooge always expected to follow the United States’ diktats in all its international affairs
  • India will lose its nuclear program to the United States
  • India will have to support blunders like the Iraq invasion

If you read Mr. Basu’s points, all of them are based on doctrinal bindings of the Left where aligning with the capitalist West ( and its “leader” – the United States) is never ever an option. Never mind the changed geo-political realities.

So I am not exactly certain as to what the fact finding committee will achieve. Or how the Left will be more at ease.

The Left are a moribund political entity. In my view, they would have been a non-entity a long time ago – if the opposition in West Bengal and Kerala were a little more organized and effective. And honest.

However regardless of their abysmal governance record, their very questionable stance pre-independence and during the 1962 Indo-China war, they are still a force primarily in West Bengal and Kerala.

However what is sad is that they will hold a deal to ransom – that is probably the best negotiated pact in the history of the Indian Republic, that is pragmatic and most importantly, that is exactly what we need to move into the next round of paradigm shifting nation building in the next 20 years.

However, a political entity, after all is a reflection of its people. Till the time when we still have sizable portions of the population who feel India isnt strong, big, prosperous, mature and stable enough not to be “America’s donkey”, “American Stooge”, “Second-Class Nation”, “Servant Democracy” or a hundred other choice epithets coined by its own people – till the time we don’t recognize our eminence, our overwhelming size – physical, fiduciary and democratically and our strategic importance to the whole civilized world – these parties will continue to exist – and try its best to keep us in moribund mediocrity.

Sad day. Politics triumphs again. Over common sense.

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