Though the opening day of the winter session of Parliament was a washout, mainly over the issue of FDI-in-retail, the division within the Opposition ranks ensured that the no-confidence motion moved by Trinamool Congress was a flop show, giving the government time until Monday to thrash out a deal with political parties.
With the new BJP-Left axis refusing to back Trinamool Congress’ no-confidence motion, there was no way the 19 MPs of Mamata Banerjee’s party could pose any threat to the government. The motion fell through as a minimum of 50 MPs had to support the motion and Trinamool managed only three extra votes from BJD MPs.
So even as the Left gleefully termed Trinamool’s “no-confidence motion against the government” as Parliament’s “no confidence in Mamata Banerjee’s tactics”, the government smirked and used the opportunity to call an all-party meeting.
Ironically, the announcement of an all-party meet on Monday first came from CPI-M parliamentary party leader Sitaram Yechury.
This was after Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath told the Opposition leaders about the government’s intention to have such a meeting, at the Rajya Sabha Business Advisory Committee meet in the afternoon.
SP and BSP MPs — who provided a lifeline to the government — meanwhile did disrupt both Houses by rushing to the Well, but it was on the issue of raising the subsidy on LPG cylinders and the SC/ST quota, respectively. Thus, they virtually diluted the attack on the government on FDI.