Modi govt defeats no-confidence motion, gets more than two-third votes

Modi govt defeats no-confidence  motion, gets more than two-third votes
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New Delhi, July 20: A motion of no-confidence against the Narendra Modi government was expectedly defeated in the Lok Sabha on Friday after a 12-hour marathon debate. The government obtained a two-third majority of the votes that it had sought to demonstrate that it enjoys support cutting across political boundaries.
The no-confidence motion received 126 votes in favour and 325 votes against with 451 members of parliament present and voting. There were no abstentions but the decision of two parties to boycott the votes had reduced the numbers in the government’s favour.
The vote came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi hit back at Congress chief Rahul Gandhi who had surprised him Friday morning with a hug after a scathing attack in his speech during the debate on the no-confidence motion.
“In the morning, the voting was not over, the debate was also not over one member comes running to me saying- Utho Utho Utho… What is his hurry to come to power? Let me tell this member it is the people who elected us. That is how we have come here,” he said in his reply to the debate.
“We are here because we have the blessings of 125 crore Indians. We are not here for selfish interest,” he said.
Modi also said that the no-confidence motion underlined the negativity of the opposition.
He also sought to turn the tables on the Congress said, insisting that it was a floor test for the grand old party and not the government.
He went on to say “Congress has no faith in the election commission, judiciary, in the RBI, in the International Agencies. They have confidence in nothing.”
Early in his speech, Modi set the tone by asking MPs to reject the no-confidence motion against his government in the Lok Sabha.
“I urge all of you to reject this proposal… What was the rush to discuss the no-confidence motion?” the Prime Minister asked in his reply to the day long debate in the lower house.
Modi was attacked by leaders of several opposition parties, including Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Telugu Desam Party’s Jayadev Galla, during the discussion over a number of issues.
The Congress chief had faulted the NDA government over demonetisation, GST, lynchings and the Rafale deal among other things.
Earlier, Telugu Desam Party (TDP) moved the no-confidence motion as the proceedings began in the Lok Sabha. As the debate began in the house, Biju Janata Dal (BJD) lawmakers staged a walkout from the Lok Sabha. Shiv Sena, too, boycotted the trust vote proceedings, with members not even signing up for attendance.
BJP leader Rakesh Singh counter-attacked the TDP and asked them to remember Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy’s tears before siding with the Congress. As the debate progressed, several prominent speakers, including Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Samajwadi Party patron Mulayam Singh, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Mallkarjun Kharge and many others participated in the debate.
In a big embarrassment to the BJP-led NDA government, Shiv Sena and Biju Janata Dal boycotted the floor proceedings ahead of the crucial trust vote. With the exit of Shiv Sena with 18 MPs and BJD with 19 MPs, the number game in Lok Sabha changed. The effective strength of the Lok Sabha is now 497, down from 534. The BJP-NDA government now needs just 249 MPs in its favour to defeat the no-confidence motion.
Today’s no-confidence motion, the 27th in Parliamentary history, is the first to be admitted in 15 years. The last was in 2003 when the Congress party moved a no-confidence motion against prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. (Agencies)