Sena to oppose Citizenship Bill in Rajya Sabha, seeks clarity on queries

Uddhav Thackeray. File photo: PTI

Uddhav Thackeray. File photo: PTI  

The party voted for the Bill in the Lok Sabha on December 9.

In a political somersault, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced on December 10 that the Shiv Sena would oppose the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill in the Rajya Sabha till there was clarity on the queries posed by the party during the debate in the Lok Sabha.

On December, the Sena had voted with the government on the Bill.

Speaking to reporters in Mumbai, Mr. Thackeray said a detailed discussion on the Bill was necessary. “We need to change this notion that one who supports the Bill and the BJP is a patriot and one who opposes it is anti-national. The government should answer all the issues raised on the Bill,” he said.

The change in stance of the Shiv Sena with three members will not alter the equation in the Rajya Sabha. The Congress with 46 members, Trinamool (13), SP (9), TRS (6), DMK (5), NCP (4) , RJD (4) CPI(M) (5), RJD (3), AAP (3), PDP (2), JD(S) (1), CPI(1), MDMK(1), IUML(1) and Kerala Congress(M) (1) are opposed to the Bill. With two Independents and one nominated member, they have a total of 109.

Watch | All about the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019

The BJP, which is the largest party in the Rajya Sabha with 83 members, has the support of the AIADMK (11), BJD (7), JD (6), Akali Dal (3), Independents (4), Nominated (3), TDP (2), YSR Congress (2), Sikkim Democratic Front (1), Bodoland People's Front (1), Naga People's Front (1), Lok Janshakti Party (1), RPI (1), PMK (1) and AGP (1). Together they stand at 128.

According to sources, Sena MPs were originally instructed to abstain from voting. The decision was changed at the last moment under pressure from a senior Lok Sabha member of the party.

The displeasure of the NCP and the Congress, the Sena’s coalition partners in Maharashtra, over the difference of opinion at the start of the alliance was conveyed to Sena leader and Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Raut.

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Printable version | Feb 17, 2020 12:30:59 PM |

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