All in a day: Karnataka crisis explained in 10 points
The crisis, precipitated by 13 MLAs – 10 of the Congress, 3 of JD(S) – sending their resignations to Speaker threatening the government’s slim majority in the 224-member assembly.Updated: Jul 10, 2019 16:26 IST
The Karnataka political drama played out in three locations – Mumbai, Bengaluru and New Delhi –on an action-packed Wednesday when Congress leader DK Shivakumar landed in Mumbai to meet rebel MLAs who had resigned last week, waited for close to five hours in rain and was eventually detained, almost pulled out by police while he was being interviewed by a TV channel.
The crisis, precipitated by 13 MLAs – 10 of the Congress, 3 of JD(S) – sending their resignations to Speaker threatening the government’s slim majority in the 224-member assembly.
Two independent MLAs withdrew their support to the state’s Congress-JD(S) coalition government on Monday. A suspended lawmaker separately confirmed he would quit. Earlier, 12 lawmakers put in their papers on Saturday.
The strength of Karnataka’s 224-member assembly will be reduced to 211 if their resignations are accepted. A party or a coalition would need 106 seats to form a government in such a scenario.
The Speaker, who holds the key now, rejected 8 resignations and asked five others to meet and convince im that their letters offering to demit membership of the House were indeed genuine.
Here’s all that happened during the day:
1. As soon as the news came in that Karnataka leaders may visit rebel MLAs in a Mumbai hotel, the holed up lawmakers wrote to Mumbai police saying they felt “threatened” as some leaders from their state would “storm” the Renaissance Mumbai Convention Centre Hotel in Powai.
Karnataka Congress leader DK Shivakumar landed at Mumbai’s Renaissance hotel, was unable to cross the police ring around the hotel that cancelled his booking citing ‘emergency in the hotel’. He decided to wait saying: ”I’ll not go without meeting my friends … They’ll call me. Their heart will break. I’m in touch with them already, hearts of both of us are beating,” he said, according to news agency ANI.
3. After cancelling his booking, Mumbai hotel served Shivakumar tea, doughnuts during his stake-out.
Meanwhile, the rebels moved the Supreme Court complaining that Karnataka Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar was not performing his constitutional mandate and delaying acceptance of their letters.
5. In Bengaluru, Ghulam Nabi Azad and other Congress leaders protested outside Governor’s house and are detained.
6. BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa, after meeting Karnataka Governor, said: I requested the Governor to convey to Speaker that he should take necessary action immediately. Kumaraswamy has no moral right to continue as Chief Minister,they don’t have the numbers.
7. In Mumbai, Maharashtra Congress leader Milind Deora came to meet Shivakumar. Both were detained and taken to Kalina University rest house. Karnataka ministers and legislators holed up in the hotel were also taken to the Police Guesthouse in Bandra Kurla complex.
8. In New Delhi, the Congress, Trinamool Congress and several other Opposition parties staged a walkout from the Lok Sabha accusing the BJP of engaging in ‘conspiracy’ and ‘horse-trading’ to topple the ruling Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka even as Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi rubbished the allegations and said the MLAs had resigned following resignation of Congress President Rahul Gandhi. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the second time in two days over this issue.
9. In a rare instance, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi joined his party members in raising slogans in Lok Sabha, he remained seated and did not go in the Well of the House with the other protesting MPs.
10. Senior Mumbai Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam slammed the city police for stopping Shivakumar and said: “I condemn the Mumbai Police for stopping Shivakumar. This is not the culture of Maharashtra to treat an honourable minister of a state,’ Nirupam said.
First Published: Jul 10, 2019 16:25 IST