Karnataka govt in crisis, 19 MLAs quit | india | Hindustan Times
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Karnataka govt in crisis, 19 MLAs quit

The 28-month-old BJP government in Karnataka received a major blow on Wednesday when 19 MLAs withdrew support, prompting Governor HR Bhardwaj to ask Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa to prove his majority by October 12. HT correspondent reports.

india Updated: Oct 06, 2010 22:55 IST
HT correspondent

The 28-month-old BJP government in Karnataka received a major blow on Wednesday when 19 MLAs withdrew support, prompting Governor HR Bhardwaj to ask Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa to prove his majority by October 12.

Testing times

Total MLAs 224
Majority mark 113
BJP (117) + Ind (6) 123
Before 19 withdrew support
BJP (103) + Ind (1) 104
After 19 withdrew support
Congress 73
JD-S 28

Possible scenarios:
Yeddyurappa bargains with dissidents and offers sops
14 of the BJP MLAs decide to vote against govt and invite action under anti-defection laws
BJP fails to get majority: Congress (73) and JD-S (28) enter into an alliance. They will need support of 12 more
Yeddyurappa recommends dissolution of the assembly that could lead to a mid-term poll.

The 19 MLAs, including 14 of the BJP's 117 legislators and five Independents, submitted letters to Bhardwaj informing him that they were withdrawing support.

The dissident MLAs, who were holed up in a resort in Chennai before meeting the governor in Bangalore, had been demanding re-induction of sacked minister and independent MLA Goolahatti Shekhar.

They have also been seeking the resignation of IT Minister Katta Subramanya Naidu after he and his son were accused of being involved in a multi-crore rupee land scam.

The dissidents have now reduced the Yeddyurappa ministry to a minority in the 224-member assembly.

But Yeddyurappa seemed unfazed. “We are fully confident that the BJP government will complete five years in office. I will prove the majority on the floor of the House," he told mediapersons, adding he would prove his majority on October 11.

The CM alleged that the Congress and Janata Dal-Secular were engineering the rebellion by offering up to Rs 30 crore to each MLA.

In New Delhi, Congress media department chief Janardan Dwivedi said cautiously, "It is an internal matter of the BJP. I will only say that as you sow, so shall you reap."

But sources in the Congress said the party is exploring the possibility of forming a coalition government with the JD-S.

The JD-S was more forthright. "From Day 1, we wanted Karnataka to get rid of the corrupt and communal BJP government. As per our strength, we are doing our best to remove them," party secretary general Kunwar Danish Ali said.

The dissidents, however, are playing hard to get. Twelve of them left for Kochi on Wednesday and were reportedly on their way to Lakshwadeep to remain incommunicado till the confidence motion comes up.