No-trust vote: Heated exchanges in Lok Sabha

By NT Bureau Published on Jul 20, 2018 01:36 PM IST

New Delhi: The Lok Sabha today took up for debate the no-trust vote against the Narendra Modi government, the first since the BJP-led dispensation came to power four years ago.

Telugu Desam Party's Jayadev Galla initiated the discussion on the no-confidence motion.

Opposition parties have brought the motion against the government on several issues like special status to Andhra Pradesh, cow vigilantism, lynchings, atrocities against women and Dalits and alleged dilution of the SC/ST Act.

The opposition move for a no-confidence motion was not allowed in the last Budget Session that was washed out due to continued uproar by TDP, TRS and some other parties demanding that government agree to the motion.

The Speaker had then disallowed them on the ground that the House was not in order as there was continuous uproar and protests in the Well by members on various issues.

Union minister Ananth Kumar today exuded confidence that the NDA would prove its majority in the Parliament and said the opposition would see the strength of 'NDA plus' during the no-trust motion.

Kumar entered the Parliament with BJP president Amit Shah and both leaders flashed the victory sign.

The Narendra Modi government is expected to have a smooth sailing when it faces the first no-confidence motion in four years in the Lok Sabha.

Leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge today accused Speaker Sumitra Mahajan of being unfair in allotting too little time to the opposition in the debate on the no-confidence motion and said the discussion cannot be treated as Question Hour.

The 32 minutes allotted to his party is grossly inadequate, Kharge said. A few minutes to each speaker is not enough to raise the host of issues, including those affecting farmers, women and Dalits, he added.

Some parties have been allotted 25 minutes and some just 15 minutes, Kharge pointed out.

Meanwhile, the Shiv Sena will abstain from voting on the no-confidence motion in the Lok Sabha moved by the Opposition against the Modi government, party sources said today.

Yesterday, the Sena's chief whip in the Lok Sabha Chandrakant Khaire issued a whip to MPs asking them to be present in the House when the motion was discussed and support the government.

Hours after issuing the whip, the Sena shifted its stance and said party chief Uddhav Thackeray had asked his party MPs to remain in Delhi and a final decision on supporting the Modi government would be taken this morning before the debate started.

MENWHILE, IN RS...

The Rajya Sabha was adjourned till noon after TDP member C M Ramesh sought to raise a issue related to an official press release.

As soon as the Ministers laid scheduled papers on the table of the House, Ramesh was on his feet to raise the issue even as Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu called Congress MP Anand Sharma to raise his matter. However, Ramesh insisted that he should be allowed to raise the matter related to the press release concerned. Naidu asked the TDP member to meet him later in the chamber, but Ramesh did not yield. The Chairman then adjourned the House till noon before announcing that whatever Ramesh said would not go on the records of the House.

NUMBER GAME

In a House of 535 members, the ruling National Democratic Alliance has 313 members in the Lok Sabha, including 274 (including the Speaker) of BJP, 18 of Shiv Sena, six LJP and four SAD.

The stated strength of the Opposition is 222, including 63 of the Congress-led UPA, 37 of AIADMK, 34 of TMC, 20 BJD, 16 TDP and 11 TRS.

IMPORTANT DAY, SAYS MODI

This morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: 'Today is an important day in our Parliamentary democracy. I am sure my fellow MP colleagues will rise to the occasion and ensure a constructive, comprehensive & disruption free debate. We owe this to the people & the makers of our Constitution. India will be watching us closely.'