The Left allies of the United Progressive Alliance today demanded a probe into findings of the United Nations-ordered Volcker Committee that named External Affairs Minister Natwar Singh and the Congress party among non-contractual beneficiaries of Iraq's oil for food programme, and cautioned that the bias of the United States and other Western countries be kept in mind while examining the issue.
'In this connection [kickbacks to get contracts from Iraq], the names of a number of Indian companies, the Congress party and the foreign minister are mentioned. The Government of India should investigate the matter,' the Community Party of India-Marxist's politbureau, its highest decision-making body, said in a statement.
'It is necessary to get further evidence and details before reaching any conclusions,' the party further said.
However, the CPI-M also said Iraq, which was under crippling sanctions for more than a decade, resorted to various methods to deal with the situation.
'It should be noted in this context that the United States and other Western countries who were instrumental in imposing the brutal sanctions for 11 years are biased against all those who had dealings with the then Iraqi government,' the statement, said adding that these circumstances must also be kept in mind when the facts and evidence are examined.
Revolutionary Socialist Party leader Abani Roy also called for an independent inquiry into the matter and said individuals and political parties also owe an explanation on this count.