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Governor tells Dharam to prove majority by Jan 27

The CM did not rule out the possibility of holding talks with Deve Gowda.

india Updated: Jan 20, 2006 01:12 IST

Karnataka Governor TN Chaturvedi on Thursday said he has asked Chief Minister N Dharam Singh to prove his majority on or before January 27.

"I have requested Chief Minister Dharam Singh to prove that his government enjoys a majority in the house on or before January 27, as this is one clear week from the day that I was informed that a question has come up on whether the government has a majority, and thus, in my view, constitute a reasonable period of time to permit the Chief Minister to prove his majority," Chaturvedi told reporters.

Chaturveri said he felt January 27 was "quite appropriate" taking into account the holidays and the planned programme of the house.

He said the government's view point was that it should be held not earlier than January 30.

Chaturvedi said he had also requested the Assembly Speaker to enable the Chief Minister to move a vote of confidence in the house on or before January 27.

He said he would like to assure the people of Karnataka and all political parties, that all decisions would be taken in keeping with the letter and spirit of the Constitution, impartially, and without fear or favour, in consonance with the "oath that I had the privilege to take upon my assumption of the office of the governor of the state."

Chaturvedi said a situation had arisen in which "doubts have been raised" on whether the government headed by Dharam Singh as Chief Minister and MP Prakash as Deputy Chief Minister enjoyed a majority in the assembly.

Chaturvedi said he was under no pressure from anybody.

"It's the decision for me to take ultimately. There is no need for any recommendation to the (Central) government. A situation has arisen, I hope to resolve it. If it's not resolved I will think of the future," he said.

"The responsibility is on Governor. I have to take the decision. It's not for me to take instructions," he said.

Chaturvedi said he did not think there was a constitutional crisis in the state.

He said there were a number of constitutional remedies, judicial determinations and many reports such as of Administration Reforms Commission, Sarkaria Commission and verdicts in cases like the SR Bommai one, to resolve what he termed as political tangle.

"Position is clear. I don't think there is any constitutional crisis," he said.

On the letter written to him by the JD-S National President requesting him not to entertain the plea of HD Kumarswamy, the Governor said it was beyond his jurisdiction.

The Governor said he gave one clear week for the Chief Minister to prove his majority after a "fair amount of introspection" and indicated that the time period was not "too long", noting that there were precedents in which two weeks, two months or more were given in such cases.

On the BJP's reported allegation that one week's time would give an opportunity for the Congress to indulge in "horse-trading", Chaturvedi said horse-trading has nothing to do with the Constitution.

"Horse-trading, I do not know, how you can define it. For me, MLAs are not the horses. Things I am not concerned at all. If there is any allegation (of horse-trading), it's a crime of a different kind."

In response to a question, Chaturvedi said 39 JDS MLAs, five independents and 76 BJP MLAs signed the registry at Raj Bhavan supporting Kumaraswamy's leadership and the JDS-BJP coalition government.

All the legislators, who were paraded before him at Raj Bhavan on Wednesday by JDS group, have told him that they have come on their own and not under pressure, Chaturvedi said.

However, he said some of the JDS ministers came to him with resignation letter and he suggested to them that they submit it to the Chief Minister.

First Published: Jan 19, 2006 15:40 IST