Cameron hit by Tory revolt over EU

London: Prime Minister David Cameron appeared to be caught in his own web as 81 of his Conservative MPs last night revolted against the party line and voted in favour of a motion in the House of Commons seeking a referendum on Britain`s links with the European Union.

During the build-up to the 2010 election, Cameron gave the impression that he was among those who favoured Britain pulling out of the EU, but the realities of office forced him to oppose any such development in future, a point he was at pains to make in the House of Commons.

The government won the motion, by 483 votes to 111, but the voting laid bare the deep divisions within the Conservative party on the issue. The Labour party is opposed to Britain coming out of the EU.

The motion on Britain`s relationship with the EU was prompted by an e-petition on the 10 Downing Street website signed by over 100,000 people, seeking a referendum on the sensitive issue. If an e-petition is signed by 100,000 people, it is expected to be debated in the House of Commons.

The belief among many is that Britain has ceded many powers to Brussels, the headquarters of the EU, whose directive increasingly impinge on member states and their ability to enact legislation applicable within their borders.

The motion was hotly debated on Monday, with many Conservative MPs vocal in their demand that Britain should pull out of the EU.