FDI debate: Will BSP, SP stand with UPA in Rajya Sabha?

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 06, 2012 06:39 hrs

New Delhi: A day after the FDI in multi-brand retail got the approval of the Lok Sabha as the opposition motion seeking immediate withdrawal of the decision was rejected convincingly as the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Samajwadi Party (SP) walked out, the Rajya Sabha will debate and vote on the issue over the next two days starting Thursday.

Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley, will initiate the debate on behalf of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The debate is expected to begin at around noon.

Jaitley had earlier on Wednesday said the Congress-led UPA Government doesn't seem to be serious about conducting business in the Rajya Sabha from the very first day of the Winter Session of Parliament.

"The first few days were wasted because the government insisted they didn't want a vote in the Rajya Sabha. Obviously, the government is unsure of its figures in the upper house. After a few days when it agreed for a vote, both the government and its supporters amongst its allies, which include those outside supporters, have been disturbing the house every morning," said Jaitley.

"Not a single member of any opposition party has disturbed the house, nobody has gone into the well and we are waiting every morning so that the scheduled business can commence. It is the government members and those supporting the government who towards the well and disturb the house. This has happened for the last few days. The whole country has seen it," he added.

Jaitley further said 'the government is unsure of which way the Rajya Sabha vote will go'.

"And therefore, it has no serious intention of allowing the Rajya Sabha to conduct its business," he added.

The UPA Government, which won the vote on motion against FDI in multi-brand retail in the Lok Sabha yesterday, is hoping that the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) will bail it out for the numbers are not in its favour in the Rajya Sabha.

The motion brought by the opposition was defeated by a margin of 35 votes as 218 members voted in favour of the motion while 253 against it

Members of SP and BSP, with respective strength of 22 and 21, did not participate in the voting yesterday as they walked out alleging that interests of farmers and small retailers had been ignored. 

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