Will Lok Sabha adjourn before the UP election results? This question suddenly popped up in the House with BJP's deputy leader V K Malhotra referring to the "corridor buzz" to seek a clarification from the government.
Backed by leader of the opposition LK Advani, Malhotra raised the issue during Zero Hour. "There is speculation in the Parliament House corridors that Lok Sabha will be adjourned on May 8 as the UPA government wishes to impose President's rule in the state in the event of a hung assembly," he said.
Malhotra's assertion brought UPA and the Left grouping MPs on their feet. In the heat of the moment the two sides had sharp exchanges. The BJP leader contended that the government has announced the Lok Sabha agenda only till May 11.
"There is no connection between the UP elections and running of the House. It is an established practice to announce only the coming week's business," parliamentary affairs minister PR Dasmunshi countered adding: "What can I do if Malhotra has become an astrologer to predict the election outcome."
As Malhotra refused to relent, the minister disclosed that he had already shared with BJP leader the items coming up in the House till May 15. "There is a big communication gap between the leader of the opposition and his deputy," Dasmunshi sought to turn the tables on the opposition.
Significantly, Advani intervened in the matter to state that Dasmunshi had approached him a few days back to suggest that the finance bill could be taken up on May 3 or 4 in view of the finance minister's coming foreign visit. " I agreed to it. But if the objective is something else, then it is a serious matter. It is a question of trust," he remarked.
Interjecting at this juncture, Speaker Somnath Chatterjee said the matter was between the government and the leader of the opposition. "We proceed on the basis that the House will continue till May 22. There is no indication to the contrary so far," he ruled.