Four dissident Congress MLAs, Ramesh Jarkiholi, Dr Umesh Jadhav, B Nagendra and Dr Mahesh Kumathalli had defied the whip issued by the party to attend the Congress Legislature Party meeting and assembly budget session.
The Congress-JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka seems to be heading for another trouble with dissident Gokak Congress MLA Ramesh Jarkiholi hinting that he would resign from the party. As Jarkiholi had reportedly campaigned for the BJP candidate in Chikkodi Lok Sabha constituency, where he has substantial supporter base in Gokak segment, reporters in Belagavi Tuesday sought to know when he was resigning from the party and joining the BJP.
In his response, Ramesh Jarkiholi said, “Technically I am still in Congress. I will take a decision after resigning from Congress. I haven’t resigned yet.” Jarkiholi expressed his anger against his younger brother and forest and environment minister Satish Jarkiholi who had asked him two days ago to come out in open, resign from the party and join BJP instead of ‘hiding in the dark by covering himself and pelting stone on the party’.
“I am not a coward to hit anyone from the dark. He (Satish Jarkiholi) has lost his mental balance,” said Ramesh Jarkiholi. The Gokak MLA and three other Congress MLAs were upset ever since Ramesh Jarikholi was dropped from the cabinet during the rejig in December. Four dissident Congress MLAs, Ramesh Jarkiholi, Dr Umesh Jadhav, B Nagendra and Dr Mahesh Kumathalli had defied the whip issued by the party to attend the Congress Legislature Party meeting and assembly budget session.
Taking a serious view of it, Congress wrote to the assembly speaker seeking their disqualification from the assembly under the anti-defection law. In the meantime, Jadhav resigned from the party and joined BJP. The speaker too accepted his resignation on April 2 paving way for him to contest against Mallikarjun Kharge from Gulbarga Lok Sabha constituency.
Ramesh Jarkiholi not only defied party’s instruction to campaign for the party candidate from Chikkodi Prakash Hukkeri, but also reportedly canvassed and sought vote for the BJP candidate Anna Saheb Jolle, Satish Jarkiholi had said Monday.