Monday, July 21, 2008

Just 1 vote could bring govt down

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This could be a replay of the last trust motion in 1999 when the Vajpayee government was brought down by one vote.
The gloves were off as UPA and the Opposition squared off for the July 22 trust vote with the numbers still too close to call and both sides resorting

to snatch-and-dash tactics to poach rival MPs, escalating a ding-dong battle marked by desperate deal-making and breathtaking brinkmanship.
With each and every vote now absolutely crucial, late night reports suggest that CPM has renewed pressure on Somnath Chatterjee to quit as Speaker after publicly saying it was up to him to decide.

The numbers game
UPA can count on 268 MPs. A couple of Independents might join. The combined opposition tally is 270. This figure might be eroded by defections. There are just four undecided votes. These can split between UPA and opposition. It is still anybody’s match

Political slugfest
UPA gets a jolt with RLD chief Ajit Singh and JD(S) leader Deve Gowda joining hands with Mayawati. In a counter move, it secures Soren’s support and claims two JD(U) MPs are set to defect. Amar Singh parades BJP MP Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh

Emerging alliances
Third Front may have got a new leader in Mayawati. Though cooperation limited at present, poll pacts cannot be ruled out. Even if UPA loses, Cong-SP pact will endure. NDA hopes that some UNPA parties like INLD and AGP will join it. Left-BSP dialogue to continue
It’s down to four fence-sitters



Source: Times of India, New Delhi

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