New Delhi: The 22 MPs of the Samajwadi Party and the 21 MPs of the Bahujan Samaj Party on Wednesday walked out of Lok Sabha ahead of the crucial FDI vote in Parliament. Sources said that BSP supremo Mayawati was reportedly unhappy as Commerce Minister Anand Sharma did not address their concerns over FDI during his speech.
Speaking to reporters, SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav said, "We have boycotted this debate. It was decided by the party. This was the best decision the SP could come up with. FDI is anti-farmer."
On Tuesday, Mulayam had re-iterated his party line opposing the government move, but at the same time he was clear as to who was his natural ally. The BSP leaders, meanwhile, had played up the secular-communal divide. "When we vote on Wednesday, we will have to decide if we can stand by communal forces," BSP leader Dara Singh Chauhan had said.
It does seem that the walkout will likely help the UPA as it will lower the strength of the House. The half-way mark is 251 votes and the UPA along with its allies and others, currently has 258 votes.