Indian communist groups oppose Obama’s visit to New Delhi

Members of various Left Front political parties set an effigy with a portrait of U.S. President Barack Obama on fire during a protest march against his visit to India, in New Delhi, India, Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015. Obama arrives in New Delhi on Sunday for a three-day visit to talk with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and to be the chief guest in India’s Republic Day parade marked annually on Jan. 26. (AP Photo/Altaf Qadri)

NEW DELHI (AP) — India’s communist parties on Saturday held a protest march and burned an effigy of President Barack Obama on the eve of his New Delhi visit, voicing fears of a U.S. domination in economic, nuclear and defense ties with India.

“Barack Obama, Hands Off India,” chanted nearly 100 protesters during their march in New Delhi.

S. Raghavan, a protester, said Obama’s visit to India, beginning Sunday,is aimed at building a military alliance with New Delhi, though Washington has been talking about expanding political and economic ties.

The main Communist Party of India and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) are strongly opposed to a 2008 landmark civil nuclear agreement between the nations.

They oppose any change in an Indian liability legislation that has kept U.S. companies from capitalizing on the deal.

Prakash Karat, a top communist leader, accused Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government of trying to find ways to circumvent the liability legislation to help American companies.