The development comes a day after the Supreme Court asked the Speaker not to take any decision on the disqualification or resignation of 10 rebel Congress-JD(S) coalition MLAs until July 16.
Five more rebel Congress MLAs in Karnataka on Saturday moved the Supreme Court seeking direction from it to Assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar to accept their resignations. According to a report in The Indian Express, the MLAs said that they are being forced to support the government on the threat of disqualification.
The five MLAs who approached the top court are Anand Singh, Munirathna, Roshan Baig, MTB Nagaraj and K Sudhakar. While Singh and Munirthna resigned on July 1 and July 6, respectively, Baig quit on July 9. Nagaraj and Sudhakar submitted their papers on July 10.
The development comes a day after the court asked the Speaker not to take any decision on the disqualification or resignation of 10 rebel Congress-JD(S) coalition MLAs until July 16.
The 10 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs have already moved the court against the Speaker’s decision to reject their resignations. The Speaker had rejected the resignations on the ground that they were not in accordance with the law.
Meanwhile, one of the rebel Congress MLAs, MTB Nagaraj, hinted that he may return to the party fold. He said that party leader and minister DK Shivakumar and other leaders came and requested the MLAs to withdraw their resignations.
“Situation was such that we submitted our resignations, but now DK Shivakumar and others came and requested us to withdraw resignations. I will speak to K Sudhakar Rao and then see what is to be done. After all, I have spent decades in Congress,” Nagaraj who is the Housing Minister in the coalition government said. He was made a minister in December last year when the Cabinet was expanded.
Speaking to reporters later, Shivakumar said Nagaraj had assured him that he would be back with the party.
“We should live together and die together because we have worked for 40 years for the party. There are ups and downs in every family. We should forget everything and move forward. Happy that MTB Nagaraj has assured us he will stay with us,” the Congress troubleshooter said.
Of the 16 rebels MLAs, 13 belong to the Congress and three to JD(S). Two more Independents withdrew support and extended support to the BJP. The saffron party is the single largest party with 105 MLAs in the 224-member House.
If the resignations are accepted, the ruling coalition strength will stand at 100 — 65 of the Congress, 34 of the JD(S) and one of the BSP. The BJP has 105 MLAs and now enjoys the support of two independent MLAs.
Meanwhile, the BJP said that the opposition is ready for a no-trust vote in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly. On Friday, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy made a surprise announcement in the House that he will seek a trust vote.
“I am ready to seek a trust vote to prove my government has majority. I request you fix a date and time to move it in the House,” Kumaraswamy told the Speaker as the 10-day Monsoon session of the legislature began yesterday.