Divide in Opp. may let govt introduce bills

The government has decided to bring contentious bills like the Women’s Reservation Bill, civil liability for nuclear damage bill in the Monsoon Session of Parliament after realising that a divided Opposition will make noises but may not influence its legislative agenda. The session will begin on Monday next week.

The Opposition’s priority differs from party to party. While the BJP will try to put the government in the dock on the “misuse” of the CBI by raising the issue of Gujarat minister Amit Shah, it may not get support from other parties, including its own allies in the NDA.
The Left, JD(U), BJD, TDP and others would focus on the price rise issue and the BJP, being the main Opposition, would join them. On the other hand, the Lok Sabha would witness rivals like the Congress, BJP, Left, DMK, AIADMK, Akali Dal coming together on the Women’s Reservation Bill but supporting parties like the SP, BSP, RJD, Opposition parties JD(U), Shiv Sena and UPA partners Trinamul Congress and the NCP may not back the bill in its current form if the government decides to go ahead with the bill as passed by the Rajya Sabha.
The Yadav troika — Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav and Sharad Yadav — would once again raise the issue of caste-based census along with the BSP and the DMK but the Congress and the BJP are giving conflicting signals on this issue.
Interestingly, a campaign for the Bihar Assembly election would also begin through Parliament, with the RJD, JD(U), BJP and the Congress members trying to score points against each other. “The Opposition will have no dearth of issues — from national to international — but its attack will not be sharp and thus will not achieve anything,” viewed a UPA manager. “Parliament may not transact any business at least in the first week,” the manager said after a meeting of the chief whip of political parties with parliamentary affairs minister Pawan Kumar Bansal held here on Friday. All of them, however, assured Mr Bansal full cooperation in the transaction of business in the two Houses. The Food Security Bill, Communal Violence Bill and the Lokpal Bill are not on the government’s agenda for different reasons.
The standing committee is said to have sharply divided on the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Bill.
Meanwhile, the month-long session could begin on a stormy note. Replying to a question, Mr Bansal declined to specify how much the salaries of MPs were being raised from the current Rs 16,000, saying that the matter was still to go to the Union Cabinet.
There are nine proposed legislation, including the salary bill for MPs, for introduction, consideration and passage, while 24 others, including the women’s quota bill, are listed for consideration.
The session, having 24 sittings spread over 33 days, would also discuss a statutory resolution seeking approval of President’s rule in Jharkhand.

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