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HindustanTimes Thu,21 Aug 2014

DMK, JD(U) oxygen may help Cong with bills, JPC

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 20, 2013
First Published: 23:42 IST(20/6/2013) | Last Updated: 01:53 IST(21/6/2013)

The season of separation with allies seems to be getting over for the Congress. The ruling party, which lost four allies worth 40 MPs in a span of seven months, is looking forward to regaining some support.

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The efforts to secure some tacit understanding from a chunk of the opposition may provide leverage to the UPA to push key bills such as food security and land acquisition and pass the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on 2G scam smoothly.

The DMK and JD(U) together have 38 MPs. Apart from supporting the passing of key bills, their four members in the JPC can also provide an edge to the UPA.

In the JPC, the UPA is currently in a minority but with the DMK and JD(U)’s support, the UPA can easily pass the draft report that has absolved both the Prime Minister and finance minister of all charges in the 2G scam.

On Wednesday, the Congress voluntarily voted in favour of Nitish Kumar’s government in the trust vote at the Bihar assembly.

On the same day, DMK leader TR Balu met Congress president Sonia Gandhi to seek support for re-election of DMK’s Kanimozhi to the Upper House.

A day after these developments, JPC chairman PC Chacko initiated efforts to convene the next meeting of the panel. “I have spoken to a few senior leaders to fix a suitable date,” he told HT. No JPC meeting has been called for over a month now.

Between September 2012 and March 2013, the UPA lost four allies — Trinamool Congress, AIMIM, JVM(P) and DMK — with altogether 40 MPs.

Chacko also indicated that the panel may fill up the vacancies before calling its next meeting. Congress member EMS Natchiappan has resigned after he became a minister and DMK member Tiruchi Siva’s term is coming to an end in July.


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