Observing that the issue of giving Leader of Opposition (LoP) status is before the Lok Sabha Speaker, Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday said everyone must abide by the presiding officer’s decision.
“There was no Opposition Leader during Nehruji’s regime. There was no Opposition Leader during Indira Gandhi’s era. Opposition Leader was not there in Rajiv Gandhi’s rule,” Naidu said.
“But Opposition Leader status should be given during BJP’s rule. They (Congress leaders) say how it cannot be given and that Constitution does not agree. They say situation was different then and now,” the Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister said, addressing an event held at BJP office here on the occasion of Jan Sangh founder Syama Prasad Mukherjee’s birth anniversary.
“They say you be liberal (in giving LoP status). It is people’s verdict and matter related to Constitution. Speaker’s decision should be adhered to and let’s see how the Speaker decides. There are some conventions, rules and regulations, precedents and directions of the Speaker. They are all there before us. Everybody has to go by that,” he said.
Asked about Congress leader Shakeel Ahmed’s reported comments that getting the LoP position is their right and that Parliament would not run if the position is not given to their party, Naidu alleged that the Congress is not able to accept the defeat.
“Alright. Let’s see. We know how to run (the House) if it is not able to run. There is no need for a public debate on this. They are not able to accept the defeat. They are not able to take the defeat even after such a terrible defeat. We leave it to their wisdom,” he said.
“People have decided whatever they had to decide. We hope that Congress and all of us together run the Parliament and do good for people and make efforts for country’s development,” the senior BJP leader said.