Sticking to their demand for a vote in Parliament on allowing FDI in multi-brand retail, the BJP and Left on Tuesday blamed the government for wasting four days of work in Parliament to manage the numbers.
The BJP also insisted that a debate and vote on FDI in retail take place on Thursday - the next working day — to both test the government's numbers and find out which parties had gone back on their opposition.
“They didn't have the numbers till a few days back. So, they have clearly done jugaad ('managed' support),” BJP spokesman Shahnawaz Hussain said. “The nation needs to know which are the parties that opposed FDI in retail earlier and have changed their stand now, and why?”
Denying that the BJP had been isolated on the issue, Hussain said the government had many “instruments” to seek support and some parties were helpless in front of it, hinting at DMK, SP and BSP. He added the DMK's “U-turn” was because of the 2 G spectrum case issue. “The UPA has been mustering numbers. The reason parliament was disrupted was that UPA had not mustered numbers. It has numbers (now). Do not know why they are hesitating,” CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury said.
Yechury said there is no way the government can escape a vote as the amendments in FEMA to allow FDI in retail need to be brought before the Parliament. “Section 48 of the Act says once these amendments are made, they have to be placed before both Houses before the 15th sitting of the first session after the amendments are made. That means by December 13,” Yechury said.