NEW DELHI: The Narendra Modi-led NDA government at the Centre will face its first no-trust vote in the Lok Sabha on Friday but has more than enough numbers to prove its strength. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Wednesday set the ball rolling by admitting a no-confidence motion moved by Telugu Desam Party (TDP) member Kesineni Sriniwas on the first day of the monsoon session of Parliament.
As for the Opposition, it will be its first unity test. It knows full well the numbers are stacked in the NDA’s favour, but hopes to send out a loud message from the floor of Parliament on the Modi government’s failures so as to build enough momentum ahead of the crucial 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Three BJP ruled states - Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh — are also heading for year-end elections.
Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs Ananth Kumar dropped hints of the BJP strategy, claiming “NDA-plus will be voting in favour of the government.” Sources said that the NDA floor managers are counting on TRS, AIADMK, and BJD to stay away from voting during the no-trust vote.
Not keen to see a re-run of the second half of the Budget session, which was washed out, NDA’s floor managers readily agreed to the admission of the no-confidence motion. Signs of the NDA and the Opposition having made peace were visible as the Lok Sabha witnessed near smooth Question Hour during which even Congress MPs raised their queries.
Mahajan said she had received notices from as many as nine MPs of various Opposition parties. However, she allowed Srinivas of the TDP to seek the “leave” of the House for his motion against the government. At the admission stage, the motion required the support of at least 50 Lok Sabha members. When the Speaker sought to test its support, members of the Congress, SP, NCP, TDP, Left, and others stood up, after which the House adopted the motion.
AIADMK, TRS, BJD to abstain?
NDA floor managers are counting on TRS, AIADMK, and BJD to abstain during the vote. “NDA-plus will be voting in favour of the government,” said Union minister Ananth Kumar
Question, Zero Hrs dropped
There will be no Question Hour and Zero Hour on Friday when the House will take up the motion for discussion and voting, the Chair announced.