PREVIOUS HOUR

NBR-SC/1N/12.00

PAPERS LAID ON THE TABLE

1. SHRI P. CHIDAMBARAM: Sir, I lay on the Table a copy  (in English and Hindi) of the Statement regarding rejection of the Award given by the Board of Arbitration (BoA) under C.A. Reference No. 2 of 2002 in terms of compulsory arbitration under the scheme of Joint Consultative Machinery (JCM) for the Central Government Employees.

2.  SHRIMATI KANTI SINGH: Sir, on behalf of SHRI SONTOSH MOHAN DEV, I lay on the Table a copy  (in English and Hindi) of the Annual Report of the Public Enterprises Survey (Volumes I, II and III), for the year 2004-2005.

3.  PROF. SAIF-UD-DIN SOZ: Sir, I lay on the Table

I.     A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following papers, under sub-section (1) of section 619A of the Companies Act, 1956:

 

(a)  Thirty-sixth Annual Report and Accounts of the Water and Power Consultancy Services (India) Limited (WAPCOS), New Delhi,  for the year   2004-2005, together with   the Auditor's Report on the Accounts and the comments of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India thereon.   

 

(b)    Statement by Government accepting the above Report.

II.   Statement (in English and Hindi) giving reasons for the delay in laying the papers mentioned at (I) above.

4.  SHRIMATI AMBIKA SONI: Sir, I lay on the Table  a copy each                (in English and Hindi) of the following papers:

 

(a)    Annual Report and Accounts of the South Central Zone Cultural Centre, Nagpur, for the year 2002-2003, together with the Auditor's Report on the Accounts.   

 

(b)      Review by Government on the working of the above Centre.

 

(c)   Statement giving reasons for the delay in laying the papers mentioned at (a) above.

 

 

5.  SHRI PREM CHAND GUPTA: Sir, I lay on the Table, under sub-section (3) of section 642 of the Companies Act, 1956, a copy (in English and Hindi) of the Ministry of Company Affairs Notification G.S.R.56 (E) dated the                   10th February 2006, publishing the Companies (Central Government's) General Rules and Forms (Amendment) Rules, 2006.

6.  SHRI M.V. RAJASHEKHARAN: Sir, on behalf of Shri E. Ahammed, I lay on the Table, under section 27 of the Indian Council of World Affairs Act, 2001, a copy (in English and Hindi) of the Ministry of External Affairs Notification G.S.R.74 (E) dated the             21st February, 2006, publishing the Indian Council of World Affairs Rules, 2006.

(DEPUTY CHAIRMAN ON THE CHAIR)

7.    SHRI PRITHVIRAJ CHAVAN: Sir, I lay on the Table:

A copy  (in English and Hindi) of  the Outcome Budget of  the Department of Space for the year 2006-07.

8.  SHRI P. CHIDAMBARAM: Sir, I lay on the Table:

I.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue), under section 296 of the Income Tax Act, 1961:

 

(1)    S.O. 4468 dated the 3rd December, 2005, notifying the Missionaries of Charity, Kolkata for the assessment years 2005-2006 to 2007-2008.

 

(2)    S.O. 4469 dated the 5th December, 2005, notifying the Society for Promotion of Wastelands Development, New Delhi for the assessment years 2005-2006 to 2007-2008.

 

(3)    S.O. 4674 dated the 17th December, 2005, notifying the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development, Chandigarh for the assessment years 1998-1999 to 2000-2001.

 

(4)    S.O. 4675 dated the 17th December, 2005, notifying the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development, Chandigarh for the assessment years 2000-2001 to 2003-2004.

 

(5)    S.O. 4676 dated the 17th December, 2005, notifying the Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development, Chandigarh for the assessment years 2004-2005 to 2006-2007.

II.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue), under sub-section (2) of section 38 of the Central Excise  Act, 1944, together with Explanatory Memoranda on the Notifications:

 

(1)          G.S.R. 4 (E) dated the 3rd January, 2006, specifying the jurisdiction of Commissioners of Central Excise (Appeals) of Vishakhapatnam - I, II, III and IV Commissionerates.

 

(2)          G.S.R. 93 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 3/2006-Central Excise, dated 1st March, 2006 providing concessional rate of Central Excise duty on specified goods of Chapters  1-24.

 

(3)          G.S.R. 94 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 4/2006-Central Excise, dated 1st March, 2006 providing concessional rate of Central Excise duty on specified goods of Chapters  25-49 .

 

(4)          G.S.R. 95 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 5/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, providing concessional rate of Central Excise duty on specified goods of Chapters 50-83.

 

(5)          G.S.R. 96 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 6/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, providing concessional rate of Central Excise duty on specified goods of Chapters  84-98.

 

(6)          G.S.R. 97 (E) dated the 1st March,, 2006 publishing Notification No. 7/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R. 95 (E) dated the 24th February, 2005, amending certain entries to that Notification.

 

(7)          G.S.R. 98 (E) dated the 1st March,, 2006, publishing Notification No. 8/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R. 138 (E) dated the 1st March, 2003, so as to provide the new 8 digit classification code for the goods covered under the SSI exemption scheme and add or delete certain specified commodities under SSI exemption.

 

(8)          G.S.R. 99 (E) dated the 1st March,, 2006, publishing Notification No. 9/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, providing exemption from whole of the Special Excise duty as specified under the Second Schedule to the Central Excise Tariff Act.

 

(9)          G.S.R. 100 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 10/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R. 140 (E) dated 1st March, 2003, so as to provide new 8 digit classification code for the goods covered under the said Notification and amend or delete certain entries.

 

(10)       G.S.R. 101 (E) dated the 1st March,  2006, publishing Notification No. 11/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, providing exemption from whole of the Additional duties of excise leviable under the Additional Duties of Excise, Goods of Special Importance Act, 1957.

 

(11)       G.S.R. 102 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 12/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R. 471 (E) dated the 10th June, 2003, so as to provide new 8-digit classification code for the goods covered under the Annexure and Schedule to the said Notification.

 

(12)       G.S.R. 103 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 13/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.   472 (E) dated the 10th June, 2003, so as to provide new 8-digit classification code for the goods covered under the Annexure-I to the said Notification.

 

(13)       G.S.R. 104 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 14/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  420(E) dated the 9th July, 2004, substituting certain entries to said Notification.

 

(14)       G.S.R. 106 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 16/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  419(E) dated the17th May, 2003, to provide new 8-digit classification code.

 

(15)       G.S.R. 107 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 17/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  308(E) dated the 17th June, 2003, to provide new 8-digit classification code.

 

(16)       G.S.R. 108 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 18/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  308(E) dated the 23rd July, 1996, so as to provide new 8-digit classification code.

 

(17)       G.S.R. 109 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 19/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  576 (E) dated the 2nd April, 1986, so as to provide new 8-digit classification code.

 

(18)       G.S.R. 110 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 20/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending certain specified Notification under Section 5A of the Central Excise Act, 1944, so as to provide the new 8-digit classification code.

 

(19)       G.S.R. 111 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006 publishing Notification No. 21/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, rescinding certain specified Notifications.

 

(20)       G.S.R. 112 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 22/2006-Central Excise, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R.  266(E) dated the 31st March, 2003, so as to specify the applicable rate of excise duty for clearances of goods from EOU/STP/EHTP etc. into the domestic tariff area.

 

(21)       G.S.R. 113 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 2/2006-Central Excise, (N.T), dated the                        1st March, 2006, seeking to supersede G.S.R. 152 (E) dated the 1st March, 2002, so as to prescribe abatement from retail sale price for the calculation of assessable value under MRP based assessment.

 

(22)       G.S.R. 114 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 3/2006-Central Excise, (N.T), dated the                       1st March, 2006, superceding G.S.R. 312 (E), dated the 2nd June, 1998,  so as to prescribe tariff value for all kinds of pan masala whether or not containing tabacco.

III.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue), under sub section (4) of section 94 of the Finance Act, 1994, together with Explanatory Memoranda on the Notifications:

 

(1)      G.S.R. 115 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 1/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, seeking to provide exemption on specified taxable services by way of abatement from taxable value for the purposes of calculating service tax, subject to the fulfillment of the prescribed conditions.

 

(2)      G.S.R. 116 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 2/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, seeking to rescind Notifications as mentioned in the explanatory memorandum to Notification No.2/2006 Service Tax.

 

(3)    G.S.R. 117 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 3/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, amending G.S.R. 555 (E) dated the 30th June, 1994, so as to withdraw the exemption from service tax on the following services in relation to general insurance business, namely: (a) Premium received from Re-insurance both domestic and overseas, and (b) All business for which premium is booked outside India.

 

(4)      G.S.R. 118 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 4/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, seeking to exempt financial leasing services including equipment leasing and hire-purchase from so much of the service tax leviable thereon as is equivalent to the service tax calculated on an amount which represent interest and principal.

 

(5)      G.S.R. 119 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing the Service Tax (Amendment) Rules, 2006.

 

(6)      G.S.R. 120 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 6/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, seeking to exempt the taxable services in relation to testing and analysis of water quality provided by a Government owned State or District level laboratory from the whole of the Service Tax leviable thereon.

 

(7)      G.S.R. 121 (E) dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 7/2006-Service Tax, dated the 1st March, 2006, seeking to exempt taxable services provided or to be provided by Reserve Bank of India from the whole of the Service Tax leviable thereon.

IV.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance  (Department of Revenue), under sub- section (7) of section 9A of the Customs Tariff Act, 1975, together with Explanatory Memoranda on the Notifications:

 

(1)          G.S.R. 81 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 9/2006-Customs, dated the 1st March, 2006, rescinding G.S.R. 478 (E) and  G.S.R. 479 (E), both dated the 26th July, 2004, which  imposed additional duty of Customs on computers.

 

(2)          G.S.R. 82 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 10/2006-Customs, dated the 1st March, 2006,  notifying the date for fixation of tariff value on Vanaspati as 1st March 2006.

 

(3)          G.S.R. 83 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 11/2006- Customs, dated 1st March 2006, amending. G.S.R. 118 (E), dated the 1st March, 2002,  specifying effective rates of customs duty on certain items.

 

(4)          G.S.R. 84 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 12/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, amending G.S.R. 74 (E), dated the 23rd January, 2004, prescribing concessional  rate of customs duty on phenol and acetone for manufacture of Bis-phenol A

 

(5)          G.S.R. 85 (E), dated the 1st March,  2006, publishing Notification No. 13/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, prescribing the general peak rate of 12.5% on non-agricultural items.

 

(6)          G.S.R. 86 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 14/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, prescribing effective rates of duty on upholstery fabrics falling under Chapters 52 to 58.

 

(7)          G.S.R. 87 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 15/2006- Customs, dated 1st March 2006, prescribing standard rate and preferential rate of customs duty on certain items.

 

(8)          G.S.R. 88 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 16/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, withdrawing Education Cess exemption on certain specified items.

 

(9)          G.S.R. 89 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 17/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, amending Project Import Regulation, 1986, so as to specify Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas as the sponsoring authority for pipeline projects of transport of crude, petroleum products of natural gas.

 

(10)       G.S.R.90 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification No. 18/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, amending G.S.R. 294 (E), dated the 23rd July, 1996 to include pipeline projects for transportation of crude, petroleum products or natural gas as Project Imports.

 

(11)       G.S.R.91 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification  No. 19/2006- Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, imposing special   CVD of 4% on all imported goods in lieu of State Taxes/VAT.

 

(12)       G.S.R.92 (E), dated the 1st March, 2006, publishing Notification  No. 20/2006-Customs, dated the 1st March 2006, exempting certain specified goods from Special CVD leviable on imported goods.

9.  SHRI PAWAN KUMAR BANSAL: Sir, I lay on the Table:

I.  A copy (in English and Hindi) of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Economic Affairs) Notification G.S.R. 59 (E) dated the 10th February, 2006, publishing the Post Office (Monthly Income Account) Amendment Rules, 2006, under sub-section (3) of  section 15 of the Government Savings Banks Act, 1873.

II. A copy (in English and Hindi) of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Economic Affairs) Notification No. PENSION 01/2004, dated the                    23rd October, 2004, publishing the Indian Bank (Employee's) Pension (Amendment) Regulations, 2004, under sub-section (4) of section 19 of the Banking Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1970, together with delay statement.

III.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Economic Affairs), under section 31 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) Act, 1992:

(1)      S.O. 38 (E) dated the 12th January, 2006, publishing the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Mutual Funds) (Amendment) Regulations, 2006.

(2)      S.O. 39 (E) dated the 12th January, 2006, publishing the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Custodian of Securities) (Amendment) Regulations, 2006.

(3)      S.O. 93 (E) dated the 25th January, 2006, publishing the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Venture Capital Funds) (Amendment) Regulations, 2006.

IV.  A copy each (in English and Hindi) of the following Notifications of the Ministry of Finance (Department of Economic Affairs), under sub-section (4) of section 23A of the Regional Rural Banks Act, 1976:

(1)      S.O. 1790 (E) dated the 21st December, 2005, regarding amalgamation of Vidur Gramin Bank, Muzaffarnagar Kshetriya Gramin Bank and Hindon Gramin Bank.

(2)      S.O. 1791 (E) dated the 21st December, 2005, regarding amalgamation of Haryana Kshetriya Gramin Bank, Hissar-Sirsa Kshetriya Gramin Bank and Ambala Kurukshetra Gramin Bank.

(3)      S.O. 3 (E) dated the 2nd January, 2006, regarding amalgamation of Cuttack Gramya Bank, and Balasore Gramya Bank.

(4)      S.O. 4 (E) dated the 2nd January, 2006, regarding amalgamation of Jamnagar Rajkot Gramin Bank, Surendranagar Bhavnagar Gramin Bank and Junagarh Amreli Gramin Bank.

(5)      S.O. 37 (E) dated the 12th January, 2006, regarding amalgamation of Cachar Gramin Bank, Lakhimi Gaonlia Bank, Pragjyotish Gaonlia Bank and Subansiri Gaonlia Bank.

(6)      S.O. 119 (E) dated the 1st February, 2006, regarding dissolution of the Haryana Kshetriya Gramin Bank, Hissar-Sirsa Kshetriya Gramin Bank and Ambala Kurukshetra Gramin Bank, by reason of amalgamation.

(7)      S.O. 120 (E) dated the 1st February, 2006, regarding dissolution of the Vidur Gramin Bank, Muzaffarnagar Kshetriya Gramin Bank and Hindon Gramin Bank, by reason of amalgamation.

(8)      S.O. 121 (E) dated the 1st February, 2006, regarding dissolution of the Jamnagar Rajkot Gramin Bank, Surendranagar Bhavnagar Gramin Bank and Junagarh Amreli Gramin Bank, by reason of amalgamation.

(9)      S.O. 122 (E) dated the 1st February, 2006, regarding dissolution of the Cachar Gramin Bank, Lakhimi Gaonlia Bank, Pragjyotish Gaonlia Bank and Subansiri Gaonlia Bank, by reason of amalgamation.

(10) S.O. 123 (E) dated the 1st February, 2006, regarding dissolution of the Cuttack Gramya Bank, and Balasore Gramya Bank, by reason of amalgamation.

V.  A copy each   (in English and Hindi) of the following papers, under sub-section (4) of section 15 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992:

 

(a)   Annual Accounts of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Mumbai, for the year 2004-2005, and the Audit Report thereon.   

 

(b)  Statement giving reasons for the delay in laying the papers mentioned at (a) above.

(ends)

REPORT OF THE COMMITTEE ON PETITIONS

. סֵ (ָ֟) : Sir, I present the Hundred and Twenty-seventh Report (in English and Hindi) of the Committee on Petitions on the action taken by the Ministry of Environment and Forests on the recommendations/observations contained in the Hundred and Twenty-first Report of the Committee on the petition praying for measures to check pollution of river Brahmani and other water bodies in Orissa.

(Ends)

STATEMENT OF THE DEPARTMENT RELATED PARLIAMENTARY STANDING COMMITTEE ON URBAN DEVELOPMENT

 

ֵ֮ ֻ ָ (ָ֟) : Sir, I lay on the Table a copy (in English and Hindi) of the statement of the Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Urban Development showing Action Taken on the Observations/ Recommendations contained in the Twelfth Report of the Committee (Fourteenth Lok Sabha) in pursuance of their Seventh Report (Fourteenth Lok Sabha) pertaining to Demands for Grants (2005-2006) of the Ministry of Urban Development.

(Ends)

STATEMENT RE. STATUS OF IMPLEMENTATION OF RECOMMENDATIONS CONTAINED IN EIGHTY-THRID REPORT

OF THE DEPARTMENT-RELATED PARLIAMENTARY STANDING COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORT, TOURISM AND CULTURE

 

THE MINISTER OF CIVIL AVIATION (SHRI PRAFUL PATEL): Sir, I lay on the Table a statement regarding the 'Status of implementation of recommendations contained in the Eighty-third Report of the Department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture. (Ends)

DISCUSSION ON WORKING OF THE MINISTRY OF

EXTERNAL AFFAIRS

 

THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION (SHRI JASWANT SINGH): Mr. Deputy Chairman, Sir, I have to submit, in advance, that I have a deficiency today and somewhat debilitated. I have got fever and a very bad throat. But, because I have said that I will initiate the discussion, I did not wish to be discourteous to the House and I shall endeavour with my speech, maybe, at fault. And, I beg the indulgence of the House in that regard.

We have had some earlier discussions on matters impinging on foreign policy. For example, on the IAEA vote and Iran, or, the nuclear matter and as far as the USA is concerned. But the discussions on those incidents were not really discussion on foreign policy as such. Therefore, I would make a distinction between the two.

At the very beginning, I wish to submit for the House that there is quite thin attendance. So, let us be assured that discussions on external affairs are not one-day matches. (CONTD. BY USY "1O")

USY/1205/1O

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): And, we don't see this opportunity to grant or deny certificates of patriotism either to somebody of the Government or another. But I will make an observation here, Sir, that I have watched over the years that the ruling party has a tendency to indulge in what I call unreal iconography.

(MR. CHAIRMAN in the Chair)

We also have a very hagiographical interpretation of our history, particularly since 1947. And, there is a completely unbelievable tendency to project the country that the Foreign Policy of the country too is dynastic. You can have your arrangements in the party as dynastic. But, to make a suggestion that the Foreign Policy of the country is dynastic is really to stretch our credibility. On this account, the Government feels to recognize change, and it begins to impose yesterday's mantra on today's reality. And, that, I think, is the classical difficulty that the management of the country's Foreign Policy, today, faces, which is, you have to make a choice, and a realistic choice, between idealism and realism. And, this is the fundamental dichotomy. Beyond this, I do not wish to elaborate; by themselves, these are significant aspects of management of our Foreign Policy. And, one could spend a great deal of time, analysing these. But beyond the conceptuals, there is, yet another, I think, crippling deficiency that this Government has. And, that is the street opposition to their policy by their own allies. I know, Sir, that the Left Parties have a tradition that is based on their ideology; and, they have been enunciating it for a very long time. But, I am left completely at sea and I try and interpret the attitude to Foreign Policy, for example, of the RJD. And, I find that other than quite spectacular flamboyance in utterances. There is really very little interest in the Foreign Policy. You cannot have a Government, which projects the country's Foreign Policy, and is yet to divide it from its principal allies, in support, in the Government. That becomes a critical and a crippling deficiency. It is impossible for me to project how much of a mockery then that makes of the country's management of its international relations. We too wish to observe this, and I do submit to the Government, on this account, that thereafter, for the Government, to continue to project the UPA's CMP. And, there is neither the UPA in the management of the Foreign Policy, nor is any CMP. And, if internally, or domestically, that be the reality, then, please try and conceptualise what it does to the conviction that we carry in the international agenda. Very briefly, Sir, I must, having said that, share that what , I think, ought to be India's international agenda, our concerns interests and priorities must be based on vital national interests.

(Contd. by 1p -- VP)

VP/12.10/1P

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): Sir, we need to have a much clearer understanding of the nature of national power. I will come to it in a minute. Indeed, also either with the powerful neighbours or powerful nations, we need to be very clear about the concept of strategic partnership. (Interruptions) The word of strategic partnership that is now, currently, in fashion, says for good relations congruence of interest has to be based on settled borders and no conflict on trade. That is the reality and that really must be the basis on which we assess. Thereafter, how we try, reform the situation and improve is a different matter. Sir, I know that I will anger a great many by saying this that India's power, internationally -- we like to say it, but I have difficulty in convincing myself about that -- is not based on moral. We like to have this illusion about ourselves for several decades soon after independence. But, then, we suffered very badly on that account. I do not want to go into an analysis of that period. That is why I say, Sir, that the first security is a country's economic security. If the country is economically stable, it is self-sustaining and it can stand upon itself, then, it will stand up against any territorial, conceptual or ideological assault.

Militarily, Sir, I have said it often and I repeat that India has to say that all nations on the earth have an equal and legitimate right to security. It is the nations that will determine what their interests are and they must decide it. We must not depend on others because dependence on others is not the sound basis on which a country like India can continue forward.

There are two very important aspects of the management of our external relations, and those, Sir, are internal order and externally sound fences. I do not know if we have either of these two. We would be deluding ourselves if we thought that internally the country has a stable order; it has not. And do we have sound fences on our borders? It is one of my everlasting regrets, Sir, that now 58 years after independence, India is, perhaps, the only country, of its size in the world, that still has unsettled borders. It is a crippling deficiency and it does shackle India internally. It is in this light, I say, we can keep deluding ourselves if we do not recognise how central and how important this is.

Sir, the principal initiatives of this Government, lately, have been three or four. (Interruptions). My focus, Sir, firstly is on initiatives with the United States of America, then, the initiatives on nuclear issues and, thirdly, on Non-Proliferation matters, and vote in the IAEA.

(Continued by PK/1Q)

PK/1Q/12.15

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): Though we have had debates on this, and I will not revisit the ground that has already been covered, but let me revisit these very briefly. The Prime Minister mentioned, and, quite rightly, that the United States of America being the pre-eminent global power. See, it is an overwhelming factor in an international relations currently, and that is the enormous power that the United States have. It is powers of economics, it is military, it is technological, and, very sadly, it is also cultural. Now the relevance of good relations with the United States has to be measured against this anvil. Though I would have difficulty in recommending the cultural also, but that is there. From coca cola, to films, that is a factor that invades our cultural space and has been doing it for the past several years. But alongwith that, the United States of America wield this power sometimes with finesse, more often, rather hamfistically. It is, presently, asserting the hegemony that it has and is rather enjoying the hegemony. We would be in error if we thought that the United States of America is a reluctant hegemon, it is not. But it suffers from two illusions which no other country in the world can set right or correct the United States of America, but India. And they argue that even the United States, surely, must know and recognise that political hegemony is seldom partnered by intellectual hegemony. There is another aspect that I must share with the House. The United States must also recognise that the dominant control or position about information does not equal the possessing of wisdom also. This is the kind of very rough template that I draw; and, therefore, when we consider Indo-US relations, what is the ultimate challenge that we as India face? We in India have always known through centuries that the essence of power is to know the limits of own power. I am afraid, the United States does not have that understanding and that it is only India that can candidly put it across to. There is another illusion that we have. That because we have gone into areas like strategic partnership etc., we must, therefore, never disagree that would be a grave for me. We must candidly, squarely, disagree where there is a need to disagree, but there is no need for India to be disagreeable every time that it disagrees, not with the United States, not with any country, for that matter. So, the principal challenge that the United States faces and, again, it is only India that can help the United States face it, which is how to help the United States, transform its near unique position, unique in the annals of human memory. No other empire, it is an empire now, has had such untrammelled power which the United States must know this. (Contd. by 1R/PB)

PB/1R/12.20

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): I want to elaborate this point that that power is effective only if it is converted into a global, moral consensus. Otherwise, it will fail. That is the reality. Today's powerful will become tomorrow's powerless. That history has taught us more than any other country in the world. And, that is why, I say what I do, Sir. Now, it is in this overall context that there is a need of recognising the pre-eminence of the United States of America, but also not belittling the eminence of India or the relevance that India has in international affairs. The concerns that, I think, and, if I might share them with the Government, are that we have to be very clear. We have to be very clear, and we have to be clinically analytical in analysing, assessing as to where the current US policy is headed. Where is it headed? Where is the United States going? In which direction? Is it clear to the United States as to where they are headed? Is it clear to us where they are headed? Have we ever sat with them and said, 'look, let us analyse where you are going'. I have often mentioned to the United States of America the differences that separate -- and that is how I have interpreted -- India's approach to diplomacy and the approach that the United States has. India approaches relations moving from the general to the specific, we have to have a general basis of understanding the other, to find an equation on the groundwork, on the foundation on which we can move forward. It is the reverse with the United States of America. They have, what I have often told them, -- you have a checklist to diplomacy system. You start the morning at 7 o'clock or 8 o'clock or at whatever clock you start, and you have a little notebook on which you write your five-seven points, and at the end of the day, if those five-seven points are not scored out, then you wouldn't have a good day. It is very difficult for India to work like that. That is why I say that we must be very clear in assessing what is the US policy, and where are they headed. I can only go, Sir, by what they themselves have said on September, 20th, 2002 in a speech. That I won't read here. It was President Bush's first term, and he made it in an academic institute then. There were five or seven benchmarks that he laid down. They were, Sir, pre-emption, and, clearly, the United States secondly mentioned about the use of weapons of mass destruction against terrorists and against terrorist-States; thirdly, the President of the United States of America clearly stated there that the US is somewhat impatient of international bodies, particularly, of the United Nations and, therefore, they are not happy. They don't consider themselves as bound by that. This is in the precincts of the United Nations. There is a very old joke. In fact, for the United States of America, there are no P-5.

(Contd. by 1s/SKC)

1S/12.25/SKC

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): There is only one 'P-1' and that is the United States of America. It is important that we be clear about this aspect of their policy because we have to deal with them. You cannot wish the United States away. They are a power, a pre-eminent one, and the way to deal with them is to deal with them certainly intellectually, and openly and to engage with them. The American does not mind a scrap, an intellectual scrap; he relishes it and, therefore, we should also not shy away from it.

The fourth aspect was unilateralism -- because we are impatient with international organizations, therefore, we, the United States of America, will act unilaterally. There is an assumption -- rather, a pre-assumption -- that the United States of America plus its allies have all the attributes that a country must have to replace the United Nations and to act unilaterally. It is a very questionable assumption. It is a very dangerous assumption.

There is another assumption, and that is, if I may put it so, a kind of pulpit evangelism about democracy. Now, democracy is all very fine, Sir. But, I had occasion once to mention that the total electorate in India, at about 671 million, is almost, not exactly, but almost, larger than the combined populations of the United States of America and the whole of West Europe. You could well say that India does not have perfect elections; perhaps not. I mean no disrespect to our former Chief Election Commissioner, who currently adorns our benches. I have been, since the Fourth General Elections, participating in this great adventure and so, when some comments were made to me, I had occasion to share with my friends that we may have other deficiencies, but actually we do count a little better than Florida did. Nevertheless, according to me, this should not be treated as some kind of a battle. We have no need to be defensive about it. And I am not ready to accept the arrogation of democratic evangelism by the United States of America; certainly not. I don't wish to analyse this in great detail. I don't have to go in my analysis even beyond our immediate neighbourbood or the Gulf. Let us accept that just as with us, or with any other country, the United States places its own national interest as of prime importance. I don't hold it against them. That is how it should be. That is how countries will do.

Sir, there is a layering of human rights thrown in by the United States to make this a complete dish. It is like a dressing on a salad. But then, on that dressing, is a rather sharp sauce, and that sauce is what they call the 'US right to intervene'. Now, you earlier had a pronouncement of policy, which was prevention, pre-emption, regime change. Now, these are extremely dangerous. We have witnessed examples of it and certainly, intervention in that direction is not something that India is comfortable with or ought to be.

It is because of all these factors, Sir, that the very first failure, -- and it is a very signal failure, because it will impact on the national interest of India, which I shall share in a minute -- the very first foreign policy and security failure of the United States of America that has occurred is, Iraq. Now, please let us assess that failure against the template that I have just drawn. I fear, Sir, that a second failure is waiting in the wings, and that is Iran. (Contd. by 1T)

GSP-MCM/12.30/1T

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): Sir, I say this hesitantly, but I say this because I have a certain interest in the subject and I have also studied it. Sir, it will be the third and perhaps greater failure, the suspended animation with our neighbour, Afghanistan. In Afghanistan, we are witnessing the resurgence of Taliban because the fundamentals were not addressed.

Sir, in the Gulf, now there is neither a map nor prospects of peace. This is an extremely volatile situation. I do not wish to assign blame but I cannot help pointing out that this extremely tinderbox kind of situation, which is in our neighbourhood, is the contribution or the failures or misconceptions of the policy of the pre-eminent global power today.

Sir, because for several years, I was engaged with the representatives of the United States of America, I told them on several occasions that you are 8,500 miles away and we are not eight and a half minutes away. So, what you do affects us much more immediately, much more directly than you will ever be affected. Sir, these are the concerns that I think I must first voice. Before I go further on analysing the position of the United States of America, let me share parts of a very fine, I think, a very succinctly put comment on the Indo-US relations in the context of what President Bush's visit has done on 2nd of March. This is by Henry Kissinger. Some of the hon. Members might have read it. The International Herald Tribune here carried it. In a part of it, Kissinger says, "If this emerging partnership is to flourish, each side needs to understand what has brought them together." That is quintessentially the realist school of foreign policy. That is why, I have started with the two schools, the idealistic and the realistic. I think, it is axiomatic that if we are moving together down the path of a strategic partnership, then we must understand why has the United States done it and why have we done it. I don't want to revisit the whole debate. I had deliberately not participated in it, Sir. It is a good thing. We must continue to have good relations with the United States of America.

Sir, in the second part, he writes, Americans think of their country as "the shining city on the hill"; its political institutions are perceived to be both unique and relevant to the rest of the world as guarantees of universal peace. Crusades on behalf of democracy have been implicit in American political thinking and explicit in American policy periodically since Woodrow Wilson - and especially pronounced in the George W. Bush administration." He goes further to say, "That is not the way Indians view their international role". And, he had a transformation. I am sure, hon'ble Mr. Natwar Singh, as a very experienced practitioner of diplomacy, knows what I am talking of. (Contd. by SK-1U)

SK/1u/12.35

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): But, Kissinger observed that this is not the way Indians view that international role. "The Hindu society does indeed also consider itself unique, but, in a manner, dramatically at variance from America's. Democracy is not conceived as an expression of Indian culture, rather, as a practical adaptation, the most effective means to reconcile the polyglot components of the state that is emerging from a colonial past". I think he puts it rather well and puts it succinctly. It is long itself. Now, Sir, he goes further, but I won't go into the other quotations. Sir, it is in this light, that I would like to share a few thoughts about what we agreed on the 2nd of March. There are just two aspects that I have been trying to find an answer to. What is in it, what is in the 2nd March understanding? It is not an agreement between President Bush and Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. What is in it for India and why did the United States do it? What is in it for the United States of America? I think, that distils what is a nuclear India. Dr. Manmohan Singh has candidly and repeatedly, I think, in both Houses, said that his quest is motivated by energy security. With that, he considers, and quite rightly, that energy is the foundation of economic security and economic is the first security. I do believe that, Sir. I do not dispute that at all. And, I myself, am a subscriber to that. I do also believe that good relations with the United States of America are necessary for the economic development of India. Good relations between two sovereign countries. So, what have we got? I won't pointlessly dwell into the entire numbers, figures, all the rest of it. As Members of this House, as representatives of various political parties and thinkers, this is an aspect that we need to ask ourselves, find the answer ourselves. The next question also, we need to think about and find an answer. Why did the United States of America do it? What is in it for the United States of America? Now, I have been trying, Sir, to understand, because I have dealt with this subject, I don't call myself an expert, but, I have travelled on this road a bit, and I find that in the United States, currently the Bush administration is seized of the foreign policy immobility. I will cite just two or three reasons which I think are the possible reasons. And, they wanted a success, because Iraq is not a success. With Aerial Sharon and the condition in which he is, Hamas ascendant and Palestine as well as Lebanaon, there is no roadmap to peace. That is in tatters. Iraq is a great tragedy. And now, the uncertainty is about Iran. Where in this spectrum could President Bush be just before the elections start in May of this year? When Governance really comes to a standstill there, where could he be? About India, let's get this thing. And that is why, I read some snippets or news items that the President, as he debouches from his aeroplane says 'I must have this deal' to certain officials, etc. Presidents do tend to do this. Therefore, there is nothing wrong with that. But we have to be very clear in our mind, did we also absolutely want this deal? I am still not very sure, Sir. My approach is not coloured by any prejudice in this regard. The United States wanted India finally into the yard.

(Contd. By ysr-1w)

-SK/YSR/12.40/1W

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): India was outside Iraq. The Prime Minister himself said that we needed to move into the sunlight of legitimacy. That is a very fair observation. Because India had to stop being part of the problem, and it had to be a solution. But was that the best way or the best manner to do it? I leave that here, Sir. That is why, I would recommend that as a follow-up to what has happened or has been done, the logical thing, which is in consonance with the India's stand otherwise, India must now consistently work towards lowering the currency and the symbolism of Weapons of Mass Destruction. It is very important that at a certain conceptual level this is what India should do. If I enter into an analysis of the numbers of 'operationally deployed warheads'... What are the numbers of 'operationally deployed warheads' per se that Russia and the United States of America have? They vary between 1800 and 2700. It is a staggering figure of operationally deployed.

In that context, therefore, when we go into a very complex discussion of sufficiency -- I won't go into all those details -- it is very important that we address this. I do wish to submit to the Government and to the House that it is my experience that the world of non-proliferation and disarmament is actually exemplified by dishonesty and by double standards. That is the reality of the global nuclear order and has been from the early beginning. I won't cite countries. Therefore, what had happened was that India was relatively, relatively not entirely, outside of the shadow of the dishonest. By what we have done, by arriving at a partnership with the pre-eminent power, we have begun to knock on the doors of sharing privilege, and that also willingly. But I wish to caution all of us that that would colour India as willingly wanting to be partners in double standards. This is a very heavy price to pay. All our idioms and all the arguments pre-98, in fact, no longer apply. This is the second affirmation that I think we need to do.

Also, I would like to quote just a little bit on Iran issue, and that is about neighbourhood. It is almost a cliche phrase by now that Iran is the home of an ancient civilisation. That is self-evident. I have often cited that till 1947 our borders met at Zahedan. Recently, when I went to Baluchistan, I expressed momentous because I was able to travel on the Gwadar Highway. But I wanted to go up to Zahedan. The last outpost is the Customs post. We have forgotten these connections. For the last several decades, Iran got caught in two pincers. One is of near perpetual Islamic revolution..

(Contd. by VKK/1X)

VKK/1x/12.45

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): ...turmoil and the resultant mis-governance and, thereafter, equally crippling, unnatural external interest and interference in Iran's affairs which is principally born of an insatiable western greed for control over Iran's hydrocarbon resources. Sir, Iran, in a very strange fashion, from the very beginning -- I don't want to go into the history of it -- as a country, demonstrates perhaps more than any other country, more possibly than our immediate neighbour which is Pakistan -- but I don't want implications to be attached to that -- the multiple failures of the management of the US foreign policy in Iran. And when I say, US, we should read the rest of the west also. And for each failure of the United States in this region, Sir, the region has paid, but, in a very real sense, India has paid. And we will continue to pay. I wanted to conceptualise many times but was completely at sea. Sir, to denigrate Iran, you built up Saddam. It is a fact. Then, you sent Saddam and Iraq spinning down into the vortex of disorder and chaos, a near civil war and the possible splintering apart of a country which in any case of the country born, indeed, in 1915-20 efforts. And that is why, Sir, we now witness everyday the killings that they do. Well before 1991, the United States, the IAEA and all these and all the evidence that they wanted for the multiple violations of so many of the P-5, plus, of course, Pakistan and the Khan Research Laboratory of A.Q. Khan was the pre-eminent power, was the United States of America, virtually a silent bystander or was it a participant? It is a question, we must ask ourselves. Now, Sir, in this situation, because if you violate the NPT, therefore, action, as in Iran's case, will follow. Is the United States of America in violation of the NPT by doing what it is doing with India? This is not an impertinent question, Sir. It is a question that we should ask ourselves. Is it a violation of the NPT or any other international agreement relevant only if a country other than the United States of America is involved? It is very difficult for me to accept or to recommend that India also pursue this path. That is a hesitation I have, Sir. I know there is no answer to it. But it is a caveat, it is a caution and it is a hesitation, I believe, with the Government. I know, Sir, the time is less, but, just a few words about our immediate neighbourhood and then a few words about our larger neighbourhood. We must persist with peace. The Government has made efforts about peace, though it is worrisome that with not one single neighbour does India have settled relations now. I don't want to go into an analysis. And, as I said, it is the only country of its size that still has unsettled border, international border. (Contd. by MKS/1y)

MKS/ASC/12.50/1Y

SHRI JASWANT SINGH (CONTD.): It is a crippling deficiency. They shackle our feet, India's feet in the management of our inflexibility that we have. We shall give our feet as far as the flexibility in our approach to the United States of America is concerned. Sir, we must agree on that thought, because I had come to that painful experience, and abandon that approach altogether. Sir, we must abandon totally pursuing the subject of India-Pak relations or what Pakistan does; that is not true. All the terrorism that Pakistan, he says, it originates or what it perpetrates; please stop raising this subject with the United States of America altogether. And I had said this in these many words to Collin Powell--from me, you will never hear anything about Pakistan, and also, to the rather impressive, very physiqued official-cum-politician,--and with him also, I have shared the same sentiments--I say it, Sir, as an aspect of India's self-confidence, India's pride, and even with the United States of America, an assertion of, how should I put it, Sir,--let it even be, in Rajasthani or what my colleague said in Punjabi-- India's akhkhadpan. Sir, we are akhkhad, but we should not have any difficulty in being akhkhad when the need arises. Here, we propound a great deal of non-violence and all that. But let us also see that in the guise of non-violence, Sir, ׮־ ֋ Sir, that is one point. I do think that perhaps, the Government ought to share with us the details; these are not the details. The outline, the sketch, what is the pursuit or what is the principle or what is persuading in the talks that they are having with Pakistan and, what I now see, with which I often have difficulties, but I have not voiced it earlier, the kind of freedom, autonomy that is being given to parts of Jammu & Kashmir, of travel, it worries us. What you have agreed to, people would like to know. Bangladesh has a situation. And Sir, Bangladesh requires a discussion by itself as does it, indeed, with Nepal, and I have my worries, Sir, that the Maoist elements and the leadership are invited by the Government of India in the vicinity of Delhi to hold talks here. There is a message in that; it is not a very reassuring message.

Sir, as far as the larger neighbourhood is concerned, there is an arc of instability that lies ahead of India. I recollect, Sir, that when I had the job that I had in South Block, I had once mentioned in the House that a scimitar of instability circumvents India. The hon. Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition took objection to my use of the phrase 'a scimitar', suggesting that there is symbolism in it, which I must desist from. That is why, I have said 'an arc of instability'. But it is, Mr. Chairman, Sir, a scimitar, whether it is Pakistan or Afghanistan, Iran or Iraq, Central Asia, indeed even the Caucacious, South Caucacious.

(Contd. by 1Z)

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