New Delhi: Special session on the trust has begun in Lok Sabha with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh moving the confidence motion.
The 16-hour long debate ahead of the UPA government’s vote of confidence on 22 July comes on the back of the Left parties withdrawing support to the 4-year-old UPA government as a retaliation against the civilian nuclear deal with the United States.
Earlier in the day, Singh asserted that his government will win the vote of confidence. Rashtriya Janta Dal (RJD), a key ally of the UPA, claimed that the government has support of more than 291 MPs.
“Our number is continuously growing. It has now exceeded the 291 mark. There is going to be a great victory for us,” said Union Railway Minister and RJD chief Lalu Prasad outside Parliament House.
Congress president and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi is also expected to speak during the debate.
“Since I assumed office, I did all in the interest of the nation,” he said moving the motion of confidence in his Council of Ministers in the House.
Commending the motion, he regretted that the House has assembled for a trust vote at a time when the government had to tackle issues of inflation and price rise.
In a brief speech moving the motion, he said: “I assure the House and the country that every single decision, every policy decision was taken in the fullest confidence that it was in the best interest of the people of the country.”
Opposition flays PM
Holding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh directly responsible for the present political crisis, Leader of Opposition L K Advani stated said that the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal has become an agreement between two individuals making India “subservient” and a “junior partner”.
He added that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was not against forging close relations with the US but was against India being party to a deal which was “unequal”.
“If people vote NDA back to power, we will renegotiate the deal to make it equal and ensure that there are no constraints on our strategic autonomy,” Advani said.
To create a broad consensus on the nuclear issue, Advani said that the government should have formed a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) but regretted that instead the UPA government went on forming UPA-Left committee.
(with PTI inputs)