Cong' Belated Claim to LoP Post in LS

Published: 11th June 2014 07:55 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th June 2014 07:55 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: In a belated show of aggression, the Congress on Tuesday staked its claim to the post of Leader of Opposition(LoP)in the Lok Sabha, ignoring Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Venkaiah Naidu’s taunt “it’s the people who’s denied them the post”.

Anand-Sharma.jpgAccording to sources in the LS Secretariat, the Congress had sent a letter to the Lok Sabha Secretary General’s Office stating that Mallikarjun Kharge had been chosen  Leader of the Party in the Lower House and that the party has 44 MPs. Meanwhile, Deputy Leader of the Congress in the Upper House, Anand Sharma told reporters that the party expected a quick and proper decision on the issue from LS Speaker Sumitra Mahajan.

There have been indications from the Speaker’s Office that Mahajan may go by precedence, where the Lok Sabha did not have an LoP in the absence of the Opposition parties failing to get the required numbers to stake the claim to the post.

However, the Congress pointed out that the situation had changed in the last two decades. The role of the LoP hasexpanded and appoint ments to the Constitutional posts, like the CVC, CBI Director, Lokpal and the NHRC, have been so democratised. The opinion of the LoP is vital in these matters.

It seems it is not so much the Congress president as the NCP chief and UPA ally Sharad Pawar, who suggested that the Congress should lay claim to the LoP post during a strategy meet. It is Pawar, who pointed out that the UPA as a pre-poll alliance should be treated as a bloc and given the position.


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