Amid the ongoing war of words on the suspension of Uttar Pradesh IAS officer Durga Shakti Nagal, minister of state in the PMO and personnel V Narayanasamy on Monday expressed confidence that the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (SP) would support the food security bill.
"I would not like to comment on the statement made by an individual leader. The government earlier had talks with the Samajwadi Party leader. So, I am confident that the Samajwadi Party will stand with us and help in the passage of the food security bill," Narayanasamy informed.
SP leader Naresh Agarwal had earlier said his party would corner and oppose the government in the Monsoon Session.
"And as Netaji (Mulayam Singh Yadav) has said, we will also vote against the food bill in its present form," he said.
The SP's opposition has intensified following Congress president Sonia Gandhi's letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asking him to ensure that the suspended bureaucrat is treated fairly.
The Congress Party on Sunday hit out at the SP for attacking Sonia for her support to Nagpal, and said the ruling party in UP is trying to hide what is essentially a case of corruption and illegal mining.
Congress spokesperson Sandeep Dikshit also dismissed the SP's comments that Gandhi should also write a letter in support of Ashok Khemka, the Haryana IAS officer who had scrapped her son-in-law Robert Vadra's controversial land deals and was transferred 44 times.
Nagpal was suspended last month, ostensibly for ordering the demolition of a wall of a mosque that was being built on government land in the state's Gautam Buddh Nagar district, where she was posted as sub-divisional magistrate.
Earlier on Saturday, The PM, speaking to the media after an all party meeting convened by Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar said: "All that we expect fully is to ask the opposition to cooperate with the government in passing the essential legislative work, which is the primary responsibility of Parliament. Of all the ordinances, five or six ordinances which are before the Parliament and most important is food security ordinance."
"And I sincerely hope that the Parliament in its wisdom will find it productive, find it justified to convert that Ordinance into a bill and an act of Parliament."
The Food Security Ordinance is among several important bills to be taken up for discussion and passage in the Monsoon Session of Parliament.