M A I N   N E W S

PM showers praise on Hazare
Ashok Tuteja on board the PM’s special aircraft

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tonight showered wholesome praise on Anna Hazare despite the social activist giving some anxious moments to the government recently by undertaking a fast-unto-death in support of his demand for the Lokpal Bill.

“As far as Anna Hazare is concerned, I respect him as an important leader who had done a lot of good work in rural development and that’s why the country respects him,” the Prime Minister told reporters while returning from his five-day visit to China and Kazakhstan.

On his peace initiative with Pakistan, the PM said he would consider his job well done if he could succeed in normalising the ties between the two countries.

On Cabinet reshuffle, which he had promised to effect before the Monsoon Session of Parliament, Manmohan Singh quipped, “There’s still some time to go.” He declined to give a straight reply when asked why the Left parties appeared to be on a losing wicket in the Assembly elections in West Bengal. “I am not the best judge on what went wrong with the Left. It’s for the people to decide and I would not like to speculate on that”, he said.

On India’s claim for a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council, the PM said there was a growing support that the Security Council and other international organisations must reflect realities of the contemporary age rather than being embedded in an era which was dead and gone.

“But I would not say that we are there as such, it is a work in progress, there’s a growing support for India’s permanent membership at the Security Council,” he said. Regarding defence exchange with China, Manmohan Singh said his expectation was that they would continue.





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