NDA asks PM to prove majority in five days

July 9th, 2008 - 9:52 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Pratibha Patil

New Delhi, July 9 (IANS) Asking the government to prove its majority in “five days”, the main opposition National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Wednesday said it would approach the president if the prime minister failed to call a parliament session Thursday. “We will meet President Pratibha Patil Friday if the prime minister does not call for an emergency session (of parliament) tomorrow after returning from the G8 meet,” senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader V.K. Malhotra told reporters after a meeting of NDA leaders at the house of Leader of Opposition L.K. Advani here Wednesday evening.

Leaders of the Shiv Sena, Biju Janata Dal (BJD), Shiromani Akali Dal, Janata Dal-United (JD-U) and Samta Party attended the meeting.

BJP leader Sushma Swaraj said the NDA was united and would vote against the Congress-led UPA government in parliament.

“We want the confusion to be immediately cleared out, which arose after External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee’s statement. We want the government to prove its majority in next five days,” Swaraj said.

Mukherjee Tuesday said the government would go to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for an India-specific safeguards agreement only after proving its majority in the Lok Sabha.

Malhotra said all constituent parties, including the Shiv Sena and Akali Dal, are with the NDA and were of the same opinion.

Earlier, Akali Dal leaders said they would take any decision on the nuclear deal in a couple of days time. Shiv Sena too had given conflicting signals.

Malhotra said his party, like others, was also in talks with Independent MPs over the trust vote.

BJP vice-president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the Samajwadi Party, which last week came to support the beleaguered government, was misusing the name of former president A.P.J. Abdul Kalam to justify its “midnight u-turn in favour of nuclear deal and the US for the sake of their personal and political interests.”

“It is a pity and shameful that the Samajwadi Party is justifying its hidden deal with the Congress party and using Kalam’s name as a security cover,” Naqvi said.

He was referring to Samajwadi Party leaders’ meeting with Kalam last week. Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav had quoted Kalam as saying that the nuclear deal was in “national interest”.

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