BENGALURU: A day after the JD (S) -Congress coalition government lost the vote of confidence in a floor test, the BJP’s government-formation attempts slipped in the slow lane on Wednesday as the party has had many legal and procedural hurdles before it Will the claim to form a government
The party is now waiting for signals from the top leadership. The central leadership is expected to send an observer to New Delhi to witness the whole process – from electing the BJP Legislature Party leader to government-formation exercise.
Late Wednesday evening, a delegation of leaders – Jagadish Shettar, JC Madhuswamy, K.G. Bopaiah, Aravind Limbavali and BY Vijayendra – left for New Delhi to meet the BJP central leadership and legal experts. After meeting RSS state leaders earlier in the day, party state president BS Yeddyurappa confirmed that they were waiting for green light from the central leadership.
The biggest acid test for the saffron-party-in-waiting – and its presumptive CM candidate Yeddyurappa – involves the fate of rebel lawmakers’ disqualification. Assembly speaker KR Ramesh Kumar is yet to make a decision on the 15 rebels’ resignation letters.
Until the speaker announces his ruling, the sources said, the BJP continues to be the single largest entity, but is not majority in the 225-member assembly. On Tuesday night, the BJP defeated the trust vote with 105 MLAs against the ruling coalition’s 100 MLAs (including Speaker and nominated member).
The 15 rebels, three independents and two non-Congress legislators – who did not participate in the vote.
BJP’s challenge will be to keep two independents in its fold
Two independents have pledged support to the BJP, taking its tally to 107. Expelled BSP MLA N Mahesh has remained noncommittal. The fate of the absentee Congress legislators B Nagendra and Sreemanth Patil is not known at the moment. If Nagendra and Patil continue to be part of the Congress and Mahesh assists the coalition, then the coalition’s numbers swell to 103. With that, the effective strength of the assembly races to 210, with the halfway mark being 106. This puts onus on BJP to ensure the independents do not switch sides
Even after the speaker accepts the rebels’ resignations or disqualifies them, BJP’s path to Vidya Soudha is not rosy: It will still be on tenterhooks as it needs the support of independents to shore up its numbers till the elections in the 15 constituencies, currently represented by the rebel lawmakers, are conducted.
Leaders to meet rebels
In the morning, BJP legislators R Ashoka and CN Ashwathnarayan left for Mumbai to pacify the rebel MLAs who were said to be restless
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