Union Petrol and Natural Gas Minister Veerappa Moily (a file photo of PIB)
Union Petrol and Natural Gas Minister Veerappa MoilyPIB

Senior Congress leader Marpadi Veerappa Moily has claimed that Congress should only get the Leader of Opposition post in the Lok Sabha in the present situation, as no other opposition party has got the required 10 percent seats of the 543-member Lok Sabha.

To get the opposition status in Lok Sabha, a party should have 55 seats, but Congress has got only 44 seats in this elections, which is a short of 11 seats. Despite this shortage of seats, Congress should get the post of Opposition Leader, Moily stated.

Moily's statement comes in the backdrop of reports that Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress is said to be making efforts to get the Leader of Opposition post with the support of AIADMK.

Moily, a former law minister, also said that there is no legal barrier for Congress to become the opposition party in Lok Sabha.

Moily said that a plain reading of the law makes it clear that for a person, to be recognized for the post of Opposition Leader, he or she should be a leader of a party in Opposition with the greatest numerical strength, PTI reported.

The main constituent of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has got a comfortable majority of 282 seats in the last elections. Now NDA is going to form the next government on Monday by making Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister.

Reviewing the drubbing of the Congress party in the elections, Moily said that the immediate task before the party is to rebuild it from the grassroots-level.

He also favoured the idea of roping in Priyanka Gandhi in the efforts to rebuild the party.

Moily, who won the Chikkaballapur Lok Sabha seat in Karnataka, is one of the three Congress ministers to retain their Lok Sabha seats. Moily has also served as the Chief Minister of Karnataka during 1992-1994.