4 parties in key role as Houses resume today

At least four parties — Samajwadi, BSP, Trinamul and DMK — that together have 80 Lok Sabha members will play a critical role in the second half of the Budget Session which resumes Monday.
The DMK and Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamul are yet to decide their role in the House after quitting the UPA. Will they vote against the government on any bill, move cut motions on demands for grants or bail out the government through walkouts? These two parties have, however, not moved closer to either the BJP or the rest of the Opposition yet. The UPA managers also cannot take the support of SP and BSP for granted either, particularly with UP Congress leaders attacking SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav. Both Mr Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati have predicted Lok Sabha elections later this year, ahead of schedule, while backing the government from outside. The SP may press for a special UP package on the lines of Bihar, while the BSP could take up the reservations issue.
While the BJP has hinted it may support the government on key reform bills, as well as the land acquisition bill; the draft JPC report on 2G spectrum allocations may well unite the Opposition, which will target Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and some other key ministers before the elections. Whether, in such a situation, the BJP will still play the role of “constructive” Opposition remains to be seen.

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