Karnataka Congress President Dinesh Gundu Rao (ANI Photo)
Karnataka Congress President Dinesh Gundu Rao has moved the Supreme Court against its July 17 order saying that rebel Karnataka MLAs can’t be compelled to attend July 18 floor test. The application filed by the Karnataka Congress chief sought clarification on the top court's order, which said the rebel MLAs cannot be compelled to participate in the ongoing Assembly proceedings, saying that the direction compromises with the party's right to issue whip.
In his plea, Rao stated that the order "whittles down" the power of a political party to issue whip to its MLAs as it has a constitutional right to do so and the court can't restrict that.
A serious political engulfed the southern state after 16 of the ruling coalition's legislators and two independents resigned from the Assembly. Their resignation put the Kumaraswamy government's future in jeopardy but Speaker Ramesh Kumar gave it the much-needed breather and rejected some of the resignations.
The MLAs had moved the Surpeme Court, accusing the Speaker of delaying in accepting their resignations. The Top court in its judgment ruled that the Speaker was free to decide on the resignations but said that the rebel MLAs can't be compelled to attend the Assembly session.
Facing a truncated strength caused by resignations of coalition MLAs, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy on Friday moved a one-line motion, saying the House expressed confidence in the 14-month old ministry headed by him. However, the House got adjourned without a trust vote after ruckus by Congress MLAs, who accused the BJP of "abducting" thier lawmaker Shrimant Patil. Right before the trust vote, Patil had gone incommunicado was later found to be admitted at a hospital in Mumbai.
Before the House was adjourned, BJP leader B S Yeddyurappa declared that his party members would stay put in the House itself overnight and even till the time the trust vote was decided. "There has been a breach of constitutional framework,” Yeddyurappa said, adding that “to protest against this, we will sleep here itself.”
Meanwhile, Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala has sent a letter to Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy asking him to prove his government’s majority before 6 pm on Friday. The letter was written after the Karnataka Assembly defied the governor’s trust vote deadline and continued the session even after 1:30 pm. Karnataka Assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar said “unless the discussion is complete, you cannot press for division (of votes for floor test).”