Communist Party: Barack Obama, Hands Off India

Communist Party: Barack Obama, Hands Off India
Communist Party: Barack Obama, Hands Off India

The Polit Bureau of Communist Party of India (CPI-Marxist) has voiced its strong protest in view of the U.S. President Barack Obama’s ongoing visit in India.

Obama is visiting India as the chief guest for the Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi on January 26.

The CPI-M has warned the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi that it should not surrender to U.S. pressure.

The Obama visit, according to CPI-M, is being preceded by various moves to appease U.S. interests by the Modi government.

Also, six Left parties in India – the CPI, CPI(M), CPI(ML)-Liberation, AIFB, SUCI(C) and RSP – organized a protest against Obama‘s visit in India. They have cited a number of reasons for their protest against Obama and his administration.

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The Polit Bureau says that the Modi government is negotiating with the U.S. authorities to find ways to circumvent the Civil Nuclear Liability Act passed by the Indian Parliament.

The right to recourse for suppliers liability has been objected to by the United States. The BJP had supported this law in Parliament. Now under U.S. pressure, this elementary safeguard for the people in the case of a nuclear accident is sought to be diluted.

The Polit Bureau demands that the letter and spirit of the law be respected and no step should be taken to pass the burden on to the Indian government or other entities.

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Moreover, the Polit Bureau reiterates its strong opposition to the renewal of the Defence Framework Agreement for another ten years. The Framework Agreement signed in 2005 contained provisions such as the Logistics Support Agreement and the Communications and Information Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) which would have made India a military ally of the U.S. on par with its NATO allies.

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The Modi government should desist from signing the Defence Agreement, which is against the interests of the country and its strategic autonomy, said the communist party.

The Polit Bureau observes that the U.S. is pressing India to dilute its patent regime and Intellectual Property Rights regulation. This is meant to facilitate US multinational drug companies making super profits in India and will result in drugs becoming more expensive for the people.

It suggests that the Obama visit should not result in any concessions to the US in this regard as also giving any special treatment to U.S. investments with regard to tax liabilities.

Photo courtesy: CPI-M

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Rakesh Raman