The Karnataka High Court will today resume hearing on a petition filed by five independent MLAs challenging their disqualification from the state Assembly.
The court had last week ruled that the outcome of the October 14 trust vote of the BS Yeddyurappa Government would be subject to its final decision on this petition.
The High Court, which had reserved orders on the petitions filed by 11 rebel BJP MLAs, challenging their disqualification under anti-defection law by Assembly Speaker KG Bopaiah, had refused interim relief to all the 16 MLAs, who sought a stay on their disqualification.
The petition, filed by the five independent MLAs contending that they cannot be disqualified as they won the election as independents, was posted for hearing today.
They had also filed an advanced application before the court on October 13 on the eve of the Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa seeking the second trust vote for an order to allow them to vote in person or to keep their votes in a sealed cover till the court announced its verdict, which was also rejected.
According to sources, the Court is yet to set a date for delivering its verdict on the issue of disqualification of 11 BJP MLAs, over which it has reserved judgement.
It is to be seen whether the court delivers its order on both the petitions today or postpones it further.
The ruling BJP, opposition Congress and JDS have been pinning hopes on the court ruling, which has a bearing on deciding the fate of the BS Yeddyurappa ministry.
The speaker had disqualified 16 MLAs on October 10, a day ahead of the first vote of confidence bringing down the effective strength of the 224-member Assembly to 208.
Though Yeddyurappa won the trust vote by voice vote, Governor HR Bhardwaj rejected it as a "farce" and directed him to go in for the second floor test on October 14, which the chief minister managed to win by head court by a margin of 106-100. Two MLAs -- Manappa Vajjal from BJP and MC Ashwath of JD(S) -- were absent which brought down the effective strength of the 224-member Assembly to 206.
The hearing is slated to begin at 1430 hrs.