Describing the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal as "historic" and in "national interest", Shiv Sena Chief Bal Thackeray did not buy his ally BJP's argument that UPA government has compromised the country's sovereignty.
"I don't think there is any truth in this political criticism. The voluntary moratorium on not conducting further nuclear tests was imposed by our government," Thackeray said in an editorial in his party mouthpiece 'Saamna'.
Thackeray, however, said only voters will decide whether the Congress and Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh will derive any political benefit due to this "historic" deal.
The octogenarian leader said the deal has opened horizons of nuclear trade for India.
"This deal should be viewed in this respect only. Due to the NSG waiver, India can procure reactors and nuclear technology to tackle energy shortage from various countries. American trade and commerce will get a fillip while India can provide for its energy security. Because of the NSG waiver, India can ink nuclear pacts with the member countries," he said.
Praising Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, Thackeray said he staked his integrity and honesty for the deal.
"He has already clarified issues related to 123 agreement and the Hyde Act. Even though the Congress can't be trusted, the same yardstick cannot be applied to the Prime Minister," he added.