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BJD declares support for government on citizenship bill

Outside the NDA fold, BJD has emerged as BJP’s most prominent ally. In June, Patnaik surprised everyone by backing BJP’s Rajya Sabha candidate Ashwini Vaishnav despite his party having the numbers to send a third BJD nominee to the House. Now, Patnaik-led BJD has decided to support the government on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.

ET Bureau|
Dec 08, 2019, 11.11 PM IST
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BJD had also helped the government in the Rajya Sabha on crucial bills related to triple talaq and Article 370.
NEW DELHI: Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has decided to support the government on the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.

“I don’t think any division will be required in the Lok Sabha as the government has the numbers,” said a BJD Lok Sabha MP, adding: “As far as the Rajya Sabha is concerned, we are going to support the government. We had certain inhibitions regarding tribals but that has been taken care of.” BJD has seven MPs in the House.

The bill is likely to be introduced in the Rajya Sabha this week itself as the session is set to end on Friday.

Outside the NDA fold, BJD has emerged as BJP’s most prominent ally. In June, Patnaik surprised everyone by backing BJP’s Rajya Sabha candidate Ashwini Vaishnav despite his party having the numbers to send a third BJD nominee to the House. BJD had also helped the government in the Rajya Sabha on crucial bills related to triple talaq and Article 370.

Trinamool’ Derek O’Brien said: “BJD is just part of NDA. They are hand in glove with the ruling party.”

BJD sources said at the national level there was no conflict with BJP and, hence, there was no need to oppose the government, especially when it has managed the numbers in both the Houses in the past.
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