In a clear sign that the opposition will make the winter session of Parliament starting tomorrow another tough one for the government, the BJP has submitted a breach of privilege notice against union minister Anand Sharma on the issue of foreign direct investment in retail. The notice has been submitted by BJP Rajya Sabha MPs Prakash Javadekar and Rajiv Pratap Rudy.
A privilege motion is usually filed when parliamentary rules and codes are broken by a member.
In Lok Sabha, leader of opposition Sushma Swaraj has also submitted a notice under Rule 184 which means a discussion and vote. The Left too has asked for a vote under the same rule.
The BJP's move came after an all-party meeting with the Speaker of Lok Sabha earlier today. The meeting was called to ensure Parliament can function smoothly.
This at the moment seems difficult, since the opposition is pushing for a discussion and vote on the contentious issue of FDI in retail, a decision that put the government in minority after Mamata Banerjee pulled out of the UPA in protest.
The government has so far indicated that it will resist a vote in any form. Speaking to NDTV yesterday, parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath said, "We will tell the Speaker we don't want discussion on FDI that entails voting. What is the vote for? We are not thrusting FDI in retail down anyone's throat." States have been given the option of not accepting the Centre's decision on this.