After four days of intense wrangling, the HD Kumaraswamy-led Karnataka government lost the trust vote in the state Assembly on Tuesday, ending the Congress-JD(S) coalition's tenure that lasted exactly 14 months. While 99 MLAs voted for the government, 105 voted against it.
Scenes of jubilation were seen in the BJP camp as its state chief BS Yeddyurappa and other leaders of the saffron party flashed victory signs in the Assembly. The Karnataka BJP tweeted saying:
It’s the victory of people of Karnataka.
It’s the end of an era of corrupt & unholy alliance.
We promise a stable & able governance to the people of Karnataka.
Together we will make Karnataka prosperous again ✌🏽
— BJP Karnataka (@BJP4Karnataka) July 23, 2019
Yeddyurappa, who is likely to take over as the chief minister now, said, "This is the victory of democracy. The people were fed up of the HD Kumaraswamy-led government. Now, a new era of development will come. Farmers have been suffering because of the drought. We will give importance to them."
On the other hand, Congress leader HK Patil was quoted by ANI as saying, "This defeat is because of the betrayal of our party legislators. I am sure that the people of Karnataka will not tolerate this type of betrayal to the party."
Former chief minister Siddaramaiah tweeted, "I would like to reaffirm that those who have fallen for Operation Kamala will never be inducted back to our party. Even if the sky is falling down! (sic)."
Following the outcome of the trust vote, Kumaraswamy submitted his resignation to Governor Vajubhai Vala. On the other hand, the BJP, which has promised to form a stable government, will discuss its future course of action during a legislature party meeting on Wednesday, according to reports.
The rebel MLAs, currently camping in Mumbai, will return to Bengaluru after Yeddyurappa is sworn in as the new chief minister of the southern state, party sources told PTI on Tuesday.
A BJP leader said the rebels, who have been staying at a luxury hotel since early this month are "very happy" after the JD(S)-Congress coalition government led by Kumaraswamy lost the trust vote.
"They (rebel MLAs) got what they wanted," the leader said, referring to the Kumaraswamy-led government losing the trust vote in the Karnataka Assembly on Tuesday evening.
The Congress-JD(S) government had earlier defied the two deadlines set by Governor Vajubhai Vala to Kumaraswamy to demonstrate his majority.
Earlier in the day, senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah hit out at Yeddyurappa, saying that he has been engineering "horse-trading" of MLAs since last year after his party was given 15 days time by the Governor to prove majority in the House.
Participating in the discussion on the confidence motion moved by Kumaraswamy, the former chief minister said that if the Supreme Court had not reduced the time granted, "the murder that has happened today would've happened then".
Siddaramaiah said that Yeddyurappa had failed to prove a majority for the BJP in the House, after which Kumaraswamy became the chief minister based on the Constitution.
"This is not the first coalition in Karnataka and country. There have been four coalitions in the state. When Yeddyurappa became the chief minister, even he did not have a majority. The BJP had won only 110 seats and formed the government with the support of six Independents."
He accused the BJP of adopting anti-democratic tendencies and said, "We must not try and uproot democracy for greed. You (Yeddyurappa) should have been a strong Opposition with 104 MLAs. You could have held the government accountable. But you insisted on such dubious measures."
The past five days witnessed high drama in the Karnataka Assembly, as MLAs made long speeches and traded serious allegations, with proceedings going on till late at night.
Kumaraswamy had moved the confidence motion on Thursday to decide the fate of the Congress-JDS government, rocked by the rebellion of a section of its MLAs threatening its survival.
The debate on the confidence motion was adjourned to Friday, with the ruling coalition defying the two deadlines set by Vajubhai Vala — to complete the process by 1.30 pm on Friday and later by the end of the day.
The proceedings were adjourned till Monday after the Speaker extracted a commitment from the government that the process would be completed by Monday itself. Voting was adjourned yet again on Monday as Congress and JD(S) MLAs insisted that voting can await a Supreme Court ruling.
The Supreme Court was scheduled to hear on Tuesday a fresh plea of two Independent Karnataka MLAs, seeking holding of the floor test "forthwith" in the state Assembly on the trust motion, however, it was deferred till Wednesday.
In Karnataka, the Congress-JD(S) government had slumped into a minority earlier in July following the resignation of several dissident MLAs. Sixteen MLAs from the ruling coalition, including thirteen Congress and three JD(S) MLAs, have tendered their resignations. One of the rebel MLAs Ramalinga Reddy took back his resignation last week, after holding talks with the Congress leadership.
The state Assembly has 225 members, including one nominated MLA. The halfway mark in the 225-member Assembly is 113.
With inputs from agencies
Updated Date: Jul 23, 2019 21:28:50 IST