Government concedes Opposition’s demand, wants it to agree to a motion that can be passed unanimously
The government on Tuesday conceded the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Opposition's demand for a discussion on price rise with voting, while persuading the Opposition to agree to an “acceptable” motion that could be passed unanimously.
A discussion under Rule 184 will be held in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday on a motion to be moved by the BJP's Yashwant Sinha and Sharad Yadav of the Janata Dal (United). K.S. Rao of the Congress too submitted a similar notice.
The Congress managers worked with the Opposition to craft a text of the motion, through which the House would call upon the government to take immediate and effective steps to check inflation.
This breakthrough should help in the normal functioning of Parliament, which was adjourned for the second consecutive day after noisy scenes in both Houses. Opposition members have been demanding a discussion on price rise, corruption and other issues, including land acquisition, since Monday when the monsoon session began.
BJP leader Arun Jaitley said the government approached his party at lunch-break with a suggestion to end the stalemate, after both Houses were adjourned till 2.00 p.m.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Bansal said Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee would respond to the discussion. The Rajya Sabha would discuss the issue next week under a corresponding rule requiring determination of the House at the end of the debate.
However, the Left and non-BJP parties were upset that the government did not consult them. “The government is talking to the BJP, as if it were a bi-polar system and other political parties had no role,” CPI Parliamentary Party leader Gurudas Dasgupta said at a press conference.
The Left, along with the All-India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, the Biju Janata Dal and the Telugu Desam Party, has been submitting notices in the Lok Sabha for an adjournment motion to discuss price rise and the government's alleged failure to control it, as opposed to the motion under Rule 184 on which the BJP-led Opposition insisted.
In the Rajya Sabha, the entire Opposition has been demanding that price rise be discussed under Rule 167, which entails voting.
Mr. Bansal admitted that he had not interacted with the Left and non-BJP parties, but said the idea was not to exclude any party but to clinch a solution that would end the stalemate, enabling the government to move ahead with the legislative business.