The Union Cabinet is likely to meet on October 3 or 4 to take a call on possible withdrawal of the controversial ordinance on convicted lawmakers, whose fate appears to have already been sealed after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s strong denunciation of it.

As the party crisis managers got into a damage control mode, government sources indicated on Saturday that a meeting of the Union Cabinet to deliberate on the ordinance is likely to take place on October 3 or 4.

An indication about the likely fate of the ordinance was available when Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath said that Mr. Gandhi expressed the view of many people in the party, “obviously suggesting that the government should have a relook into it”.

His deputy in the Ministry Rajiv Shukla insisted that the party’s job is to give direction to the government.

“In the last six decades, there have been a number of occasions, when party has got the government’s stand changed. Party’s job is to give direction to the government.

“Government always owes explanation to the party because the party is the one, which decides the policies and guides the government. So, the party is a guiding force. So if the suggestion has come from the party, then that has to be given weightage by the government,” Mr. Shukla said.

Mr. Nath, who had on Thursday met President Pranab Mukherjee to explain to him the rationale behind bringing the ordinance, downplayed the change in the party stand.

“It’s only normal and natural that there will be divergence in views. It has happened in the past and the Prime Minister is responding. It is our party.

“It is his (Mr. Gandhi’s) view and he has expressed the view of many many people in the party, so obviously suggesting that the government should have a relook at it… The PM said that he will address the issue, when he is back,” Mr. Nath said.

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