New Delhi: Confident of sailing through its first no-trust vote since coming to power, the BJP is all set to use the debate in Parliament to target the opposition on Friday. Leading from the front would be PM Narendra Modi who fired the first salvo early in the morning and reminded parliamentarians that the entire country would be following the proceedings closely.
Terming it an important day for the democracy, PM Modi took to Twitter and urged parliamentarians to have a positive and constructive outlook. "Today is an important day in our Parliamentary democracy. I'm sure my fellow MP colleagues will rise to the occasion and ensure constructive, comprehensive and disruption-free debate," he wrote on his official account on the micro-blogging site. "We owe this to the people and the makers of our Constitution. India will be watching us closely."
Today is an important day in our Parliamentary democracy. I am sure my fellow MP colleagues will rise to the occasion and ensure a constructive, comprehensive & disruption free debate. We owe this to the people & the makers of our Constitution. India will be watching us closely.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 20, 2018
This would be the Narendra Modi government's first no-confidence motion in past four years and all eyes will be on fence sitters like the AIADMK, the BJD and the day-long debate that is likely to set the agenda for the 2019 General Elections.
Though the numbers are heavily stacked against the Opposition, the Congress and other parties indicated on Thursday that they are keen to utilise the debate to attack the Modi government on a wide range of issues including farm distress, slow economic growth and rising incidents of lynching.
The BJP, on the other hand, is seeking to expand the guaranteed support of 313 members after estranged ally Shiv Sena said it will back the government and look for support from regional parties like the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam(AIADMK) and the Biju Janata Dal(BJD).
In a House of 534 MPs, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has 313 members including 274 (including the Speaker) of BJP, 18 of Shiv Sena, six of Ram Vilas Paswan-led LJP and four from Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).
The majority mark in the House is 268. There are 11 vacancies.
(With agency inputs)