With the Government all set to implement the long-standing Indo-American nuclear deal by proceeding with the India-specific safeguards agreement at the IAEA, the confidence vote in Parliament becomes key to what shape Indian polity takes over the next couple of weeks.
The centre is extremely confident of securing majority as it’s beloved ex-allies try to do all they can to ensure that the INC’s reign comes to a premature end. Obviously, the Congress has something in mind considering the way they are proceeding with implementation of the deal before the next US government comes to power. It’ll all boil down to how crucial a role Mulayam Singh’s Samajwadi Party plays in this political potboiler.
The SP has given the Congress support simply because of the fact that the Congress no longer plays a role in Uttar Pradesh politics, where Mayawati’s BSP and Mulayam Singh have emerged as the protagonists. The Congress has sacrificed it’s interests in UP to keep hold of the strings at the Centre. A compromise was always on the cards. And talking of general elections, if the only option is a clear threat to secularism then we are better off right now.
Public opinion is more pro-Nuclear deal than against it. There is an energy crisis of sorts. Or maybe there isn’t one right now as such. But you don’t have to be an expert to contemplate a near-future predicament. Nuclear energy will serve some purpose, especially when we need to step up efforts to reduce our dependencies on oil. It’ll take time and research, but soon we might have no option.
What could work against the deal and larger national interest is the downfall of the Congress. The Congress can ill-afford to lose majority simply because they are seemingly unlikely to continue at the Centre in times of excessive inflation. Let us hope that the country does not lose it’s stability in the wake of early elections. But you simply don’t get any feel-good out of the current political scene.