UPA II is minority govt: Mamata

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 06, 2012 02:42 hrs

New Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday called the win of vote on FDI in multi-brand retail in Lok Sabha by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) as a shame and reiterated that the government is indeed a minority government as proved in the voting.

"It is a shame! The mandate today proves that the UPA-II is a minority Government. As against the majority figure of 271, based on the total strength of the House, the support was only 253, despite all attempts made by the selfish people," she posted on Facebook soon after the FDI vote win by UPA.

"This Government has lost its credibility. They must take fresh verdict from the people," she said.

After a heated two-day long debate, the UPA led by the Congress won the vote on allowing 51 percent FDI in multi-brand retail in Lok Sabha on Wednesday, defeating an Opposition motion against it.

While the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) of Mayawati and Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (SP) abstained making it easier for the UPA to win, the ruling coalition got 253 votes in their favour of FDI in multi-brand retail. They needed only 236 after the walkout as the half way mark came down.

A total of 218 members cast their votes against FDI in multi-brand retail after the motion brought by Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj was put to vote.

A total of 471 lawmakers were in House during the voting.

The last to debate on the FDI in multi-brand retail was Trinamool Congress, which in September walked out of the UPA government over the issue and other clutch of bigh bang economic reforms announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Trinamool Congress MP Saugata Roy said there is no harm if someone wants to go Swarovski and buy crystal, but FDI in multi-brand retail sector would ruin traders and farmers.

"Babalogs and Bibilogs [Westernized urban rich] can go and buy from Sarovski and Omega," he said, adding that FDI in multi-brand retail would be harmful for the nation.

Roy said there was no consensus on the issue though Congress claimed there is.

While Congress led UPA bailed itself out in Lok Sabha, in Rajya Sabha it stands a crucial test since the Congress lacks adequate numbers in the upper house.

The FDI debate under Rule 168, which entails voting, is set to take place in the Rajya Sabha on Dec 6 and 7.

The support of Mayawati and the SP are crucial for the government in Rajya Sabha.

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