Speaker allows FDI vote, but turmoil still in Rajya Sabha

Speaker Meira KumarThere were indications today that the Lok Sabha might finally start working today after a four-day hiatus, as Speaker Meira Kumar allowed a discussion on foreign direct investment in retail under the rule that entails voting.

''I have received 30 notices for discussion on FDI in multi-brand retail under Rule 184. I have admitted the motion to allow the discussion. The date and the time will be decided later,'' the Speaker announced in the house.

There were clear indications on Wednesday that the government would bow to the opposition demand for a vote on the subject, in order to get the house functioning and pass some important bills.

Meira Kumar's decision came minutes after the leader of the house Sushilkumar Shinde, parliamentary affairs minister Kamal Nath and leader of the opposition Sushma Swaraj met her in her chamber before the house convened for the day.

Leader of the opposition Sushma Swaraj thanked the speaker for allowing the Bharatiya Janata Party's motion. "I thank you for allowing the motion and I assure you that now the house will run smoothly," she said.

However, all may not be smooth sailing even yet, as there were indications that the government would allow voting on the issue only in the Lok Sabha and not in the Rajya Sabha.