KR Ramesh Kumar – at the centre of the Karnataka’s almost month-long political drama- has stepped down as the Speaker of the Vidhana Soudha. While unconfirmed reports suggest that Kumar will be leaving for Hyderabad soon, officially there has been no statement so far. Ramesh Kumar’s decision to resign from the post of the Karnataka Speaker came shortly after Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa won the trust vote.
With the BJP comfortably placed in the numbers game after the disqualification of 17 rebel MLAs that reduced the effective strength of the House, the opposition Congress and JDS did not press for division. On the eve of the trust vote, Kumar had disqualified 11 Congress MLAs and three JDS lawmakers till the end of the current term of the House in 2023, in addition to three earlier, bringing down the majority mark to 105, equivalent of the current strength of 105 of the BJP, which also enjoyed the support of an Independent. The Congress has 66 members, JDS 34, the Speaker one (who has a casting vote in case of a tie) and one expelled BSP member who was thrown out of the party for violating its directive to support the H D Kumaraswamy government during the trust vote on July 23.
Here’s what you should know about KR Ramesh Kumar:
- K Ramayya Ramesh Kumar is an Indian politician and Congress leader from the state of Karnataka. Kumar, a five-term member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly, stepped into his political career in 70s with the Indian National Congress.
- Later, he joined the Janata Party in the mid-1980s, and joined the Janata Dal in the 1990s. In the early 2000s he came back into the Indian National Congress.
- In 1978, Kumar beat RG Narayanareddy by over 18000 votes to win his first Legislative Assembly Election from the Srinivaspur Assembly seat in Karnataka.
- So far, Kumar has fought a total of 10 Assembly elections from the state. In the 2018 Assembly elections, Kumar contested the Srinivaspur seat on a Congress ticket and won successively by beating GK Venkata Shiva Reddy of Janata Dal by 10373 votes.
- In June 2016, Kumar was inducted into the Siddaramaiah led Karnataka government as the Health and Family Welfare Minister. He was elected unopposed as the speaker of 15th Assembly of Karnataka after JDS and Congress forged an alliance to form the government in the state.