Two days after taking oath as Chief Minister of Karnataka for the third time, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader BS Yeddyurappa resigned from his post ahead of the floor test. Yeddyurappa's move came after it became clear that he would fail to prove majority in the house.
Two days after taking oath as Chief Minister of Karnataka for the third time, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader BS Yeddyurappa resigned from his post ahead of the floor test. Yeddyurappa’s move came after it became clear that he would fail to prove majority in the house. Yeddyurappa’s resignation came in less than 48 hours after he took oath as the state chief minister, replacing Congress’ Siddaramiah.
BS Yeddyurappa, in his emotional speech at the Vidhana Soudha said that people had blessed BJP with 104 seats but the mandate wasn’t enough for Congress. He thanked the people of Karnataka for making BJP the single largest party and added that only if he would have got 113 seats instead of 104, he would have made the state a paradise. “I have traveled throughout the state for the last two years and have seen pain on the faces of people. I can’t forget the love & affection I received from people,” he said.
Yeddyurappa’s resignation now paves way for Janata Dal (Secular) leader HD Kumaraswamy to take over as the Chief Minister. The Congress and JD(S) entered into a post-poll alliance to stake claim to form the government as they had the required majority number to prove majority on the floor of the house. “We are waiting for invitation from the Governor’s House,” he said, when asked when he will take oath as Chief Minister.
Yeddyurappa said that seats are not important and it is the anger against the government that matters. “Seats not important, anger against government matters. I will lose nothing if I lose power, my life is for the people,” an emotional BS Yeddyurappa said, as he announced his resignation.
“I will travel across the state non stop. We have received tremendous love and support across the state. For 2019, I promise, we will win 28 out of all 28 Lok Sabha seats. I won’t relent. I will continue to fight. I hereby resign as CM. I thak people of Karnataka. Be it in power or in the opposition, I’ll continue to fight for the rights of the people of Karnataka.”
Immediately after resigning, he went to Raj Bhavan to meet the governor. Meanwhile, Congress’ DK Shivkumar, JD(S)’s HD Kumaraswamy and other MLAs shook hands after Yeddyurappa’s resignation.
Bengaluru: Congress’ DK Shivkumar, JD(S)’s HD Kumaraswamy & other MLAs at Vidhana Soudha after resignation of BJP’s BS Yeddyurappa as Chief Minister of Karnataka. pic.twitter.com/qdGu8zGXWK
— ANI (@ANI) May 19, 2018
Hours before the scheduled floor test, TV reports suggested that Yeddyurappa was asked to pull out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah after it became clear that the 75-year-old leader may not be able to win the trust vote. However, there was no official confirmation on this from BJP.
What made the job tougher for Yeddyurappa was the sudden emergence of missing Congress MLAs — Anand Singh and Pratap Gowda Patil — after the grand old party alleged that they were being held captive at the Goldfinch Hotel in Bengaluru, barely a kilometre from the state assembly where the MLAs were administered oath of office by pro tem speaker KG Bopaiah.
While Anand Singh was captured on cameras leaving the hotel for the assembly, Pratap Gowda Patil who made a dramatic entry was seen having lunch at Vidhana Soudha with Congress’s DK Suresh and Dinesh Gundu Rao. He was surrounded by other MLAs of the Congress as well.
Here is what happened when Pratap Gowda Patil reached the assembly:
— ANI (@ANI) May 19, 2018
The Karnataka assembly floor test was scheduled to take place at 4 PM after the directions of the Supreme Court which reduced the 15-day window given by Governor Vaju Bhai Vala to Yeddyurappa to prove majority on the floor of the house. The Bharatiya Janata Party had won 104 seats in the state assembly elections held on May 12 for 222 out of 224 seats, emerging as the single largest party. Congress, on the other end, had won 78 seats while JD(S) had emerged victorious on 37.
The Congress-JD(S) combine has claimed the support of 117 MLAs, including one each from the BSP and the KPJP, and one Independent. Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad congratulated the MLAs of Congress and JD(S). “We would like to congratulate the MLAs of Congress, JD(S), independent as well as BSP who resisted all sorts of temptations & arm twisting by Central govt. They stood by the party principles & decision taken by the party leadership,” he said.
Earlier in the day, a special session of the Karnataka Assembly began where the Pro-Tem Speaker K G Bopaiah welcomed and congratulated the members elected to the 15th Assembly and started administering the oath to them.
In the Assembly, Bopaiah read out the procedures to be followed during the oath taking of the members. Yeddyurappa took the oath first, followed by Congress Legislature Party leader and his predecessor Siddaramaiah.
EXPLAINED | What is a floor test?
This happened minutes after the Supreme Court rejected a plea filed by Congress and JD(S) questioning the appointment of KG Bopaiah as the pro-tem speaker by Governor Vajubhai Vala. The apex court ordered a live telecast of proceedings of the floor test in order to maintain transparency.
Meanwhile, Congress had also shared an audio clip of an alleged conversation between Yeddyurappa and a Congress MLA, alleging the BJP MLA of bribing him. This was the third such clip released by the Congress alleging BJP leaders of trying to bribe Congress MLAs.