The Opposition-dominated Vidhan Parishad (Upper House), has created a piquant situation for the ruling Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in the House. The "minority scenario" for the ruling party has emerged after a long time in 100-member House.
The Samajwadi Party has 38 members followed by BJP, 24, BSP, 12, teachers’ group, nine, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), 6, Congress, three, Samajwadi Janata Party one and independents four. There are three vacancies.
While in 401-member state assembly the BSP has 206 members, the ruling party is in utter minority in Upper House, which could pose functional problems.
Talking to Hindustan Times the leader of Opposition Ahmad Hasan said on Monday "we will play full opposition role". Even though Hasan said no decision has so far been taken about any issue, he said "aap dekhye ga ham kal kiya karte hai" (you will see what we do in the House tomorrow).
However the leader of teachers’ group Om Prakash Sharma did not see much problem in the passage of government bills. "Ruling-party-in-minority situation has come after nearly two decades but in the past also the House played constructive role," Sharma said and added "the teachers group would neither press for vote nor associate with any such demand by the Opposition".
Sharma said "teachers group would like to honour the decision of lower House unless there is hasty decision on any public issue". He said "BSP is weak in numbers but it is unlikely to face any functional problem".
The RLD leader Munna Singh Chauhan however said "the party would play role of Opposition and we have already moved amendments on the Governor’s address". Chauhan did not rule out the possibility of problems during the passage of Bills. He said "necessary bills would be okayed but the BSP government would not be allowed bulldoze the House".
Sharma said Upper House could withhold a Bill for one month and thereafter the lower House could adopt resolution on the Bill for its passage. "In this situation the approval of upper house is not required," Sharma said and added "if Upper House rejects the bill then lower House would have to pass it again and there is no need to send it to the Elders again". "But the Upper House doesn’t have power to reject Finance Bill," Sharma remarked.