Govt expecting support from non-NDA parties
TDP chip whip in Lok Sabha K Narayana Rao issued whip directing the party MPs to be present in the House "throughout two days - Thursday and Friday".
But a senior TDP leader seemed to have reconciled to number game. "We know our limitations. We do not have adequate numbers. But we are happy that finally the debate on No Trust motion against the Modi government will take place and our party can highlight the genuine grievances of our state".
TDP has been demanding Special Category status for Andhra Pradesh and quit NDA in March.
The No Confidence motion moved by TDP member Kesineni Srinivas aganst the Modi government would be taken on Friday, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan announced in the Lower of House of Parliament.
Immediately after the end of Question Hour on the first day of the session, as soon as the motion was moved by TDP MP from Vijaywada Mr Srinivas, several opposition members including from Congress, Left parties and Trinamool Congress were up on their feet to support it.
Congress floor leader Mallikarjun Kharge protested that as largest opposition party, the motion of no trust against the Modi government moved by Congress party should have been accepted.
The Speaker said, "I have gone by rules and the ruling of the Chair cannot be discussed here".
The four-year-old NDA government will face its first motion of no-confidence on Friday, July 20.
“Hum mooh tod jawab denge (We will give a befitting response)," Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar told reporters and claimed in addition to all the NDA allies who are rock solid behind the government - "even non-NDA parties will be voting against the motion".
"NDA ek jut ho kar, is Avishwas Prastav ki gala ghot degi (An united NDA will virtually take the opposition parties" motion of No Confidence to its logical end)," he said when asked if the government was confident of support of its allies like Akali Dal and Shiv Sena.
Sources said the ruling dispensation is keeping fingers for support from parties like AIADMK and Biju Janata Dal.
the Minister skirted any direct reply on whether the BJP has tried to reach out to parties like Biju Janata Dal of Naveen Patnaik and AIADMK.
"It is too early to comment on these,".
The numbers – undoubtedly support the government claim.
In a House with effective strength of 535 members as of now, the ruling National Democratic Alliance can easily have 314 members with Speaker’s vote. Otherwise the tally comes to 313 including 274 of BJP, 18 of Shiv Sena, six LJP of Ram Vilas Paswan and four Akali Dal.
The majority mark would be 268 only.
But more than the number game, the BJP would use the opportunity to expose the ‘inherent contradictions’ in the opposition camp.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister also said in fact bringing such a motion hardly has any meaning. "In the garb of the No Trust motion, the opposition wants to make baseless allegation and raise some issues which are being spread across the country only to spread some falsehood".
"They want to raise these issues in Parliament also, but their efforts will fail. On all these issues, the Modi government is ready to give a befitting reply and yet again we can highlight all our achievements and works carried out in the last four years," Mr Kumar said.
According to sources in the NDA, besides the BJD and AIADMK – who have often cooperated with the government in the past, the ruling side is also trying to enlist support from the K Chandrashekhar Rao-led TRS.
Though Anbumani Ramadoss-led PMK in Tamil Nadu and Raju Shetty-led Swabhimani Paksha of Maharashtra are no longer with the NDA, the BJP floor managers believe they too could support the government.
Importantly, from numbers point of view TRS has 11 members.
All eyes will be on Trinamool Congress as well as the party has already raised the bogey of date of debate and voting.
Ananth Kumar has rightly sensed a kind of ‘nervousness’ in the opposition rank and therefore he said, even after the Motion is admitted- "It is surprising that now the opposition parties are being hesitant".
His reference was to Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge and Trinamool member Dinesh Trivedi making a request in the House to defer the debate on No Trust motion till Monday.
"Everybody knows we observe Shahid Divas on July 21 when 14 youths were killed by police....kindly consider to change it to Monday (July 23)," said Trinamool MP Mr Trivedi.
Otherwise, Mr Trivedi said – the Trinamool members will miss the debate in the House and such a possibility will "not be good for democracy".
After the plea was not entertained and Parliamentary Affairs Minister rejecting it, Mr Trivedi and his other colleague Saugata Roy - present in the House - staged walkout in protest.
On July 21 every year, Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress observe Martyr"s Day to commemorate the 1993 Kolkata firing by the West Bengal Police during a rally by the West Bengal Youth Congress.
So a big question comes – has Trinamool prepared ground to stage a walkout and save itself from the ‘big defeat’ and not vote on Friday.
Of Course Sonia Gandhi has tried to sound optimistic and said: “Who said we do not have numbers”. But these are nothing more than rhetoric.