Sonia confident of winning trust vote
Preparing for the confidence vote in Parliament on July 22, top UPA leaders on Friday held a strategy session in New Delhi with alliance Chairperson Sonia Gandhi expressing confidence of proving majority in the Lok Sabha.
The meeting, which was attended by representatives of most UPA constituents, assessed the numbers that the ruling coalition has on its side after the exit of 59 Left Party MPs, whose dissociation was regretted by Gandhi.
With the government seeking a trust vote on July 22, Gandhi said it was time for the UPA "to look ahead" after Left's withdrawal of support and praised Samajwadi Party for supporting the coalition.
"I have no doubt that we shall prove our majority," she said in her opening remarks at a meeting of the UPA Coordination Committee where Prime Minister Manmohan Singh explained the developments related to the nuclear deal.
A highlight of the meeting was the presence of JMM MP Hemlal Murmu amid speculation that the five-MP strong Jharkhand outfit was unhappy with the Congress after its supremo Shibu Soren was not re-inducted into the Government.
LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan was not present at the meeting as he is away in London. Also absent was AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi, who was attending to some family matters in Hyderabad.
Gandhi thanked the Left parties "who have been with us during these last four years" and said without their support the UPA could not have been formed and "a good deal" of what has been "achieved" would not have been possible.
"Unfortunately, we could not carry them with us on the nuclear agreement despite our best efforts. While we regret their withdrawal of support, it is now time to look ahead," she said.