The BJP-led NDA will press for an adjournment motion in the Lok Sabha on Monday to enable the House to debate the Nandigram violence.
The NDA contends that the CPI(M)’s “re-takeover” of a cluster of villages in south Bengal amounted to a “civil war” and should be discussed in Parliament as the Gujarat riots had been several times.
Top BJP and NDA leaders decided on this course in a meeting at the residence of Leader of the Opposition LK Advani even as the four Left parties declared they will not allow a “state law and order’’ matter to be raised in Parliament.
“Nandigram can be discussed in the West Bengal Assembly but not in Parliament,” CPI leader Gurudas Das Gupta said at a joint press conference with his party colleague D Raja and the CPI(M)’s Sitaram Yechury, Basudeb Acharia and Rupchand Pal.
To the Congress’s discomfiture, the Left intends to block the BJP’s Nandigram onslaught by raking up the Tehelka expose on the post-Godhra riots, which according to them was “state patronage to a communal carnage”.
Lest the issue of the Tehelka expose polarises the atmosphere in Gujarat before the December 11 and 16 Assembly polls, the Congress has reportedly begun back-channel efforts to dissuade the Communists and the Samajwadi Party from raising the expose. But there are no indications that these parties would heed the appeal.
The NDA said Nandigram was not a state issue exclusively as it pertains to acquisition of land for a Special Economic Zone (SEZ), which is a central subject.
“Nandigram has witnessed severe crimes against women and children and the Lok Sabha has a mandate to discuss issues like this, which amounts to a civil war,” BJP’s deputy leader in the Lok Sabha V.K. Malhotra said.
Asked whether the demand for discussion on the issue was justified, he shot back: “Why can’t Nandigram be discussed when Gujarat has been discussed several times?”
Malhotra criticised West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee for saying that CPI(M) cadres had “won over” a territory in the country. “It is laughable.”
On India-US nuclear deal, he said there was no change in the party’s stand and that it would press for a discussion under a rule which entails voting.
The BJP’s position was made clear to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh by senior party leaders Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Advani when he met them on Wednesday evening seeking their party’s support during the debate on the deal in Parliament.
Before facing the impending storm on Monday, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha have decided to give themselves an extra holiday on Friday on account of Chhat festival .