New Delhi, Oct. 10: Trinamul Congress leaders today said they were looking ahead to early elections despite Mayawati’s breather, insisting it was a temporary relief as nobody would risk alienating voters by propping up a “discredited government” for long.
They said the Bahujan Samaj Party chief, who deferred a decision on withdrawing outside support to the UPA government, would have surely pulled the plug had it not been for the CBI sword hanging over her head.
The Supreme Court yesterday gave the agency the go-ahead to investigate Mayawati in an assets case.
Mamata Banerjee’s party is convinced the relief is “temporary”, and sooner than later the BSP would be compelled to snap the 21-MP cushion it extends to the Centre.
“The Congress is fast turning into a liability. Anybody who rescues the government would have to pay a price in the people’s court. The CBI tool will not work for long,” a Trinamul MP said.
At a media conference in Lucknow, Mayawati said the “decision (whether to continue support) will be taken soon and conveyed to you”.
If the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister eventually decides to withdraw support, the UPA’s Lok Sabha strength will fall to 275, a precarious majority of four.
Trinamul leaders drew hope from Mayawati’s statement that the government might come up with a populist budget early next year.
“Mamata has cautioned the people not to fall into the trap of populist announcements the government might make in the next budget since it will not have the time to implement them. Mayawati repeated it at her rally in Lucknow. It’s a clear hint that she, too, did not want the government to get the opportunity to present a popular budget in 2013,” another Trinamul MP said.
Trinamul has planned an all-out offensive against the government during Parliament’s winter session, expected to start late next month, and is confident its stand would lead to the fall of the UPA.
If not a no-confidence motion, Trinamul has decided to push for discussion and vote over a resolution on FDI in retail, convinced it is the perfect tool to corner the government and embarrass it.
Party sources said Mamata was informally in touch with leaders of other parties and had been assured of support. “Nobody would be able to bail out the government on the FDI issue…. Even the DMK (a UPA ally) has declared that it would support us if we bring a resolution,” a Trinamul leader said. “What face will the government have to continue in office if it is defeated.”
Trinamul leaders sounded upbeat over activist Arvind Kejriwal’s corruption allegations against Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra, saying the issue had the potential to dent the Congress’s prospects in the next elections.
Left parties, too, are preparing to take on the government during the winter session. “If the government brings the pension and insurance bills in the winter session, we will tear it up like others had done with the women’s reservation bill,” warned a CPM MP.
Trinamul is also against the two bills.