The CPI(M) on Friday asked why the Manmohan Singh government was trying to portray the Wikileaks reports as “unverified” when the U.S. Administration was itself saying these were cables of its own embassies across the world including India.
“We are unable to understand why our government is not ready to accept the genuineness of these cables when (US Secretary of State) Hillary Clinton has herself gone telephonically warning world governments about their leakage”, CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat told reporters here.
Observing that more cables would come out in the near future, he said, “These will provide a very revealing glimpse of the state of affairs of our government in the past few years, particularly after it entered into a strategic alliance with the United States.”
On the protests against the Jaitapur nuclear power project, he said the CPI(M) would make it a national issue and form a national committee, including political leaders and scientists, to support the cause of the local people.
Noting that the Wikileak cables from India, brought out first by The Hindu, had also thrown light on developments before the signing of the Indo-U.S. nuclear deal, he said, “The key question is have we really thought about the consequences of large nuclear parks like Jaitapur where six nuclear plants from the French company Areva will be set up“.
Drawing a parallel to the recent accidents at the Fukushima plant in Japan after being hit by the massive earthquake and tsunami, he said there were major safety and environmental concerns and the entire Jaitapur project “needs a relook“.
“Fishing will become impossible in the area. The issue is what will be done with the spent fuel. At Fukushima, the ’spent (fuel) rods’ which were hit by the tsunami started heating up”, Karat said and asked there was no clarity as yet on how the spent fuel would be disposed off.
The CPI(M) leader said the technology to be used by Areva had not been tested anywhere globally, including in France and, in addition, it was “terribly expensive“.
To questions about WikiLeaks cables mentioning about a meeting between a US Embassy officer and himself, Karat said he had only one meeting with the then Deputy Chief of Mission who “I think, wanted to persuade me not to oppose FDI in retail trade and the entry of (major US retailor) Walmart into India. Probably, he wanted to probe what our stand will be”.