Opposition inclined to spare the ruling UPA of indictment
Barring a last-minute hitch, it would be business as usual when Parliament meets on Thursday with the government and the Opposition veering round to a compromise on the latter's adjournment motion on black money. The government is ready to give in to the demand for the motion and the Opposition, on its part, is inclined to spare the ruling dispensation indictment.
Consultations are on between the government and the Opposition on the exact wordings of the motion.
For two consecutive days Parliament could not transact any business due to logjam over separate adjournment motions censuring the government on price rise and black money.
The government's case was it could not allow an adjournment motion with an element of censure on the ground that if the motion is carried it would have serious political consequences.
A face saver for both sides
With Parliament not able to transact any business for two days due to logjam over separate motions by the Opposition censuring the government, a via media is being worked out that would be a face saver for both sides.
The Opposition would have the satisfaction that it has succeeded in tabling an adjournment motion. The UPA could breathe easy as the motion does not point fingers at the government.
The BJP and the Left earlier insisted on censuring the government for its ‘failure' to take effective measures to unearth black money stashed away in foreign safe havens. In the changed context, senior BJP leader and former Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, just back from his road yatra against black money and corruption, is likely to table an adjournment motion on the situation arising out of the illegal money stashed away abroad and action being taken against guilty persons.
The proposed motion by the Left is a little more elaborate. It calls on the government to bring back money illegally stashed, to use it for development of the nation and seeks answers on steps taken by the government to curb corruption.
Keen on normal functioning of the Parliament to ensure early passage of several important Bills, including the Lokpal, the government appears to have taken the path of conciliation. “The government is always for normal functioning of the Parliament and is ready for any discussion. Our only contention is that the form and content have to be mutually acceptable,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal said.
Earlier in the day, the hopes of the ruling parliamentary managers on Tuesday based on understanding from the Left that they would drop their demand for an adjournment motion on price were dashed when the subject came up for discussion.
Pranab meets Mulayam
Meanwhile, continuing his initiative to get the Opposition on board for smooth functioning of Parliament, Finance Minister and UPA trouble shooter Pranab Mukherjee met Samajwadi Party leader Mulayam Singh over lunch.