Monsoon Session likely from July 22

A Monsoon Session of Parliament is expected to begin on July 22 at a time when the atmosphere has already become hot on the issue of who had helped Union Carbide chief Warren Anderson to flee from India after the Bhopal Gas tragedy in 1984.

According to the well-placed sources in the UPA, the government has already indicated a date about the Parliament session next month. Though the Cabinet committee on parliamentary affairs has yet to meet on this issue, the mood in the government is to conclude the session before August 15, they said.
The Anderson issue has already brought the BJP-led NDA and the Left together. While they have sharpened their attack on the Congress party, especially its top leadership, the UPA partners have so far not taken a convincing stand on it.
But the UPA appears to be not worried about the Opposition unity viewing that it will not last long. “After all, the Congress had not only won the Bhopal Lok Sabha seat but won Madhya Pradesh after the gas tragedy,” they pointed out.
A section of the Congress wants the party to field its best voices (in the government) to counter the Opposition onslaught on the Leadership. “They (Opposition) are using SMS network effectively against the Congress and thus influencing perception of a large section of people across the country,” party insiders feared.
Earlier, the Sangh Parivar and the Janata Parivar had used the media on the Bofor’s issue and virtually put the Congress on the defensive, they said.
It will be interesting to see whether the Samajwadi Party, BSP, RJD — supporting the Manmohan Singh government from outside, would remain with it on this issue during the session.
While the Opposition is questioning the accountability, the Congress is conceding systemic failure on this issue. Meanwhile, the Congress on Thursday hit back the BJP by accusing the party of “facilitating the activities of Dow Chemicals” in Narendra-Modi ruled Gujarat. “If any fingers are to be pointed, they should be pointed at BJP which took donation from Dow Chemicals. It’s their government in Gujarat in which they have had collaborations with Dow Chemicals. They are facilitating the initiatives of Dow Chemicals in their states,” Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said.
To a question about reports of a US diplomat saying that the ministry of external affairs was involved in ensuring safe passage to Warren Anderson in 1984, he said “since there is a GoM and it has been given the mandate, it will be appropriate to wait for its outcome than indulging in speculation.”

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