SP gathers flock in capital, fears physical interception by Maya

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New Delhi, Jul 18 (UNI) Fearing physical interception by BSP chief Mayawati's Administration, its arch rival in Uttar Pradesh Samajwadi Party today collected all its MPs in the capital three days ahead of the crucial trust vote in Parliament.

The SP, which technically has 39 MPs, quite a few of whom have turned rebels, has decided to vote for the UPA government on the confidence motion over the nuclear deal.

The BSP is dead against the deal and would vote against the Government along with the Left, NDA and several other parties.

When asked why a meeting of the SP's parliamentary board was held again within a week, party sources told UNI that ''it was no formal meet of the Parliamentary Board but the party just wanted to have all MPs in the capital, because it feared that some of them could be stopped by the Mayawati Administration from coming to the capital on July 21''.

''It is very likely that some of the MPs could be detained on some fabricated charges against them, and thus prevented from voting in the Lok Sabha on July 22,'' the sources said.

Ever since the present crisis for the UPA government began and the SP switched its support to the ruling alliance, it has been alleging that the BSP was trying to poach on its MPs and threatening them of dire consequences if they did not fall in line, which Ms Mayawati as dismissed as a bundle of lies.

At today's meeting, the SP asked all of its Lok Sabha members to ensure their presence on July 21 and 22.

''The meeting was held to take stock of the current political situation and to ensure that there were no abstentions on the crucial day,'' an MP said.

He said two MPs Saleem Sherwani and Usha Sharma were among some of the members who could not attend today's meeting. However, some of them like Mohan Singh, who were absent from the Board's meeting held last week, were present today.

Two rebel MPs Jayprakash Rawat and Rajnarain Budholia who did not attend the last meeting were absent this time too. One MP Munawwar Husain is facing suspension for anti-party activities. He today openly declared that he was going to join the BSP after the vote of trust on July 22. Besides, two of the SP MPs Atiqurrehman and Afzal Ansari were in jail, but their loyalty too was in question.

Two more SP MPs Beni Prasad Verma and Raj Babbar, who too were facing suspension, were not supposed to be present at today's meeting.

UNI NAZ PK CS1854

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