The Monsoon Session of Parliament is set to begin on a stormy note today. All eyes will be on the Congress and the Opposition unity as these 13 parties will try to bring a no-confidence motion against Narendra Modi government.
Unveiling the joint strategy of the Opposition parties after the all-party meet, leaders of Opposition in the respective Houses, Mallikarjun Kharge and Ghulam Nabi Azad said the decision to move a no-confidence motion was taken in the meeting of Opposition parties held on Monday night.
“All 12 parties present in the meeting have decided to bring a vote of no-confidence motion against the Modi government in the Parliament. Four parties that could not attend the meeting of the Opposition parties will be consulted,” said Kharge. Parties present in Monday’s meeting included NCP, TMC, BSP, SP, RJD, DMK, CPM, CPI, JD(S), RSP, KC(M) and IUML.
Reading out as many as 11 “common issues” finalised by the Opposition parties, Kharge made it clear that the opposition wants to support the government in the functioning of the house, but it is the government’s responsibility to take the opposition in to confidence. The issues Kharge read out include incomplete promises of BJP’s manifesto for 2014, BJP leaders’ support to those accused of lynchings, rising cases of violence against women, removal of reservation for SC/STs in educational institutions, farmers issues, job losses and government formation in J&K.
The Upper House concern
With numbers not on its side, the government is unlikely to go for election to the post of Rajya Sabha’s deputy chairman and will push for a consensus candidate.
The post has been lying vacant since last month after the retirement of P J Kurien, who was elected to the upper house of Parliament on the Congress ticket from Kerala, and later became its deputy chairman in the UPA government.
A top government source said that parliamentary rules do not set any deadline for filling up the post and there were precedence in the past when it lay vacant for more than a session.
The BJP-led NDA does not enjoy a majority in the house and would need support of several regional parties to push for election of its candidate in case of a contest.
“Our efforts would be to build consensus for the deputy chairman of the upper house,” Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Vijay Goel told PTI.
Earlier, Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu had also suggested both the government and the opposition to elect the deputy chairman unanimously.
Naidu made these remarks at the farewell function of Kurien.