Parties try to get numbers for no-trust motion

Parties try to get numbers for no-trust motion

Congress President Rahul Gandhi arrives to attend the Monsoon Session of Parliament. (PTI Photo)

As the Narendra Modi government braces for the first no-trust motion in the Lok Sabha on Friday, both the ruling NDA and Opposition are engaged in last-minute efforts to drum up more numbers.

Though the BJP-led NDA is way ahead with 312 assured votes on paper if no surprises happen, both the sides want to wean away the fence-sitters like the AIADMK and the BJD. The Opposition has 150 assured votes while the half-way mark is 268 in a House of 534 at present.

For the Opposition, one of the problems is that the motion is moved by the TDP, with which the TRS (11 MPs) and BJD (20 MPs) are at loggerheads over state-specific issues. Both the TRS and BJD are likely to abstain from the voting. “What we will do during voting is not decided. The instructions will be conveyed by the party leadership on Friday.

There is no doubt that the BJP needs to be opposed but we cannot support a motion moved by the TDP. We have differences with the TDP over Polavaram project. If the motion was moved by some other party we might have voted against the BJP,” a BJD MP told DH.

A TRS MP said the TDP-led Andhra Pradesh government had opposed Kaleshwaram project and wondered “how the TDP could even think of asking our support,” he asked.

Another fence-sitter is the 37-member AIADMK. While the BJP floor managers are confident that it would vote for the NDA, there is speculation that it could abstain keeping in mind the politics in the state.

AIADMK P Srinivas is learnt to have met BJP chief Amit Shah. However, the Shiv Sena said it would take a call on the issue only on Friday morning.