The notices of no-confidence motion in the Narendra Modi’s Council of Ministers, moved by the Chandrababu Naidu-led TDP and the Jagan Mohan Reddy-led YSRCP, were again not taken up in the Lok Sabha by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan on Monday amid din and ruckus, even as the proceedings of both Houses of Parliament were washed out for the 11th consecutive working day.
This was the second straight day when the TDP and the YSRCP moved their notices of no-confidence motion in the BJP-led NDA government in protest against its “failure” in granting special category status (SCS) to Andhra Pradesh as assured to the state by the Centre during its bifurcation in early 2014.
On this issue, the TDP had ended its four-year-old alliance with the BJP last Friday and had walked out of the NDA after pulling out its two ministers from the Modi government.
The notices of no-confidence motion ~ moved on Monday by the YSRCP MP Y V Subba Reddy and the TDP members Thota Narasimham and Jayadev Galla ~ were again not taken up as Speaker Mahajan said there was no order in the House. She then adjourned the House for the day at 12.08 p.m.
As soon as the House met for Zero Hour after the Question Hour was washed out, members from the TRS and the AIADMK trooped into the Well, shouting slogans and waving placards.
While the TRS was demanding an increase in reservation in Telangana, the AIADMK was continuing to press for immediate setting up of the Cauvery River Management Board.
Amid their protests, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said the government was ready for discussion on any issue, including on the no-confidence motion. He sought cooperation from all parties in this regard.
Informing the House that she has received no-confidence motion notices from Subba Reddy, Narasimham and Galla, the Speaker said: “I am duty-bound to bring the notices before the House. Unless the House is in order, I will not be in a position to count the 50 Members who have to stand in their assigned places so that I can ascertain as to whether the leave has been granted or not.”
The Speaker then asked the protesting TRS and AIADMK members a couple of times to return to their seats. As the uproar continued, Mahajan said since the House was not in order she would not be able to take up the no-confidence motion notices. She then adjourned the House till Tuesday morning.
This is the first time since the Modi government assumed office in May 2014 that it has been facing a no-confidence bid in the Lok Sabha, with the TDP and YSRCP ~ backed by the Congress, Left and other Opposition parties ~ expected to carry on with the move until it is taken up by the House in coming days.
The Andhra parties’ bid seemed to have heated up national politics, even as the Modi government has continued to exude confidence about its comfortable majority number. With the BJP alone having 274 members in the 540-member Lok Sabha and still enjoying the support of several allies, the no-confidence motion, if accepted, would not succeed.
The Opposition leaders, however, said it would be “politically and symbolically significant” by putting the Modi-led BJP in a tight corner in the run-up to the 2019 general elections.
While the TDP has 16 MPs in the Lok Sabha, the YSR Congress has 9 MPs. The Congress and Left leaders have asserted that they would support the no-confidence motion against the Modi government.
The BJP and the government have rejected the Opposition’s move, maintaining that they do not anticipate any problems in dealing with it.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar Monday said the NDA government was ready to face the no-confidence motion as it has support “inside and outside Parliament”. “The BJP government is a government of majority. And when we consider the NDA, we have two-thirds majority,” Kumar told reporters.
The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day minutes after it assembled this morning after Andhra and Tamil Nadu parties disrupted proceedings over ther respective issues.
An upset Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu wondered why the House was being stalled when all sections were in favour of discussing every issue. Parliament has become a “laughing stock” because of such a logjam, he said before adjourning the House.