Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh said the Opposition's proposed debate and voting on the FDI in parliament would not affect the government's decision. He said in his twitter post that neither the government would be brought down nor would it withdraw its policy on the FDI even if the resolution against FDI was passed successfully.
"The BJP doesn't the support no-confidence motion which could have brought down the government through voting but insists on a motion on FDI with voting," Singh tweeted, referring to former ally Trinamool Congress's (TMC) attempt to push a no-confidence motion in the Parliament on Thursday which failed to gather any substantial support.
On Thursday, top BJP leaders like LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley had participated in the dinner which was hosted by the PM. The latter's dinner diplomacy was a strategy to convince opponents while keeping the UPA's own house in order.
The previous Monsoon session was almost completely washed out after the government and the Opposition locked horns over the coal scam. This time, it looks the debate over the FDI will leave the Parliament with little time to take up other pending issues. PM Singh was accompanied by senior central ministers Kamal Nath and P Chidambaram during the dinner.
Sources said the PM's dinner diplomacy did not work for both the BJP and the Congress were adamant on their respective stands. While the Opposition party said it would allow the Parliament to function only if the government discussed its major policy decision to allow 51 per cent FDI in multi-brand retail under Rule 184 that entails voting.
The ruling party on the other hand said the decision taken was an executive one and did not need the Parliament's backing. The Congress said it was ready to discuss the issue but was not in favour of voting.
The BJP leaders told their Congress counterparts that the latter had promised in the last winter session that all stakeholders, including political parties, would be taken into confidence before any move was made on the FDI.
The first day of the Winter Session was a complete washout, as usual. The highlight of the fruitless day was the TMC's bid to move a no-confidence motion against the government over the FDI in retail but it failed as it could not gather required support of 50 MPs, the minimum number required to move the motion. The BJP and Left also opposed FDI in retail but preferred a debate and a voting to a no-confidence motion.