Ahead of the Parliament session, the government on Tuesday exuded confidence that there would be takers of the Trinamool Congress’ no-confidence motion that it plans to bring on the opening day of winter session on Thursday.
The TMC chief whip Sudip Bandopadhyay told the parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath at a meeting of chief whips of all parties that his party would begin the session by enforcing a discussion on the no-confidence motion.
Brushing aside any threat to the government, Nath said the government was not worried as it had enough numbers. “A party with just 18 MPs is threatening to pull down the government. We are not worried. We have numbers,” he told at a press conference. A no-confidence motion requires support of at least 54 MPs even at the stage of its admission for a discussion.
He, however, said scores of notices have been received for discussion on the FDI in the multi-brand retail under Rule 184 that entails voting at the end as also under Rule 193.
“There is, however, no precedent of the executive framework decision challenged in Parliament,” he said.
Government Business: Unlike other sessions, the government has come out with light business listing just one-fourth of the pending bills for consideration and passage, besides introduction of 10 new bills. The session will also discuss and vote on a supplementary budget. Sources in the parliamentary affairs ministry said care has been taken to list non-controversial legislations.
Controversial business includes the two bills on insurance and pension. Sources say, they have been listed on the assurance of finance minister P Chidambaram who said, he was already in talks with the opposition leaders for their passage.
As against 102 pending bills, 25 are listed for consideration. Being just month-long session with only 20 sittings, four of which on Fridays have been reserved for the private members’ business, Kamal Nath said the government has, therefore, listed just one-fourth of the pending bills for consideration and passage. He said 10 new bills have been listed for introduction. As many as 23 bills are pending before the parliamentary standing committees for scrutiny while the Lokpal Bill is before the select committee.
He said it is only an ‘indicative’ list while the food security bill, dear to Sonia Gandhi, is certainly the government’s priority.