India's main opposition party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP,) Tuesday endorsed the government's vote against Iran at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) meeting, saying it was not in India's interest to have another nuclear neighbor in its vicinity, Press Trust of India reported Tuesday.
But the party attacked the government for the "impression" that it has surrendered its sovereign rights to take decisions on key issues and "permitted to be hustled and pressurized into voting in a particular manner."
After a meeting of the BJP Parliamentary Party executive, chaired by party leader and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, the party issued a statement, saying that it was not in India's interests to see Iran acquiring nuclear weapons.
"India can clearly neither ignore, nor minimize the strategic implications and adverse consequences of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons," the statement said.
"It was therefore patently in India's interests to have been in the forefront of that vast majority of the international community questioning many clandestine devices through which nuclear technology and material have been transferred to Iran from Pakistan and several other countries."
"These acquisitions are in clear violation of the obligations, and commitments under the Non-Proliferation Treaty plus all related safeguard provisions of it," the party said in the statement.
Later, briefing reporters, party leader Jaswant Singh said, " The BJP is clear that it was not in national interests to have another nuclear weapon power in its neighborhood but the casual manner in which it treated the issue raises doubts that the arrival of the conclusion was determined by the government at the prodding and pushing upon some consideration."