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Published On: Thu, Jul 11th, 2019

Karnataka: Will examine if resignations are genuine, says Speaker

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Karnataka-Speaker-finds-rebel-MLAs-resignations-faultyBANGALURU : The Supreme Court will hear tomorrow the plea of Karnataka Speaker Ramesh Kumar seeking more time to take a call on the resignations tendered by rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs. The development comes after the apex court ordered the MLAs to appear in person before Kumar at 6pm and fixed a midnight deadline for Kumar to take a call on them.
MLAs don’t communicate to me and rush to the Governor. What can he do? Is it not misuse? They approached the Supreme Court. My obligation is to people of this state and the Constitution of the country. I am delaying because I love this land. I am not acting in haste said Speaker Ramesh Kumar
The HD Kumaraswamy-led Karnataka coalition, which came to power in May last year, is hanging on to power by the fingernails after 18 resignations since last week. The coalition’s 118 members will come down to 100 and the majority mark will drop from 113 to 105. The BJP has 105 members and the support of the two Independents, which takes its tally to 107.
In a press conference on Thursday evening, Kumar said that while he had received the resignations, he would take time to verify and authenticate that they were’t submitted under duress.

Ten rebel Karnataka lawmakers, heavily protected by policemen, briskly walked to the Speaker’s chamber in the state assembly Vidhana Souda on Thursday holding blank papers and rewrote their resignation which, if accepted, will leave the ruling Congress-Janata Dal Secular coalition in a minority. “They have submitted their resignations,” Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar told reporters after the one-hour meeting.
Asked whether he had accepted the resignations, which he had rejected on grounds of wrong format, the Speaker said: “You cannot expect me to work at lightning speed. I have to go through the procedure as per the constitution. I need to examine these resignations all night and ascertain if they are genuine.”

The Supreme Court had ordered him to meet the rebel lawmakers, who have been in Mumbai since Saturday, and make up his mind on whether he would accept their resignation.

The meeting was video-recorded amid allegations that a lawmaker who had quit yesterday, K Sudhakar, was manhandled and locked up by leaders of the Congress and JDS. One of the rebels, B Basavaraj, was seen half-running into the Speaker’s office. Once inside, they reportedly told the Speaker they would submit their resignation again in the format that Mr Ramesh wanted.

The rebels had gone to the Supreme Court yesterday alleging that the Speaker had not accepted their resignation letters as a stalling tactic to help the Congress-JDS government and give its negotiators time to win them back.  Mr Kumar said it was his constitutional duty to verify the resignations and “such an inquiry cannot be completed forthwith or latest by 12 midnight today.”

After examining the letters on Tuesday, Mr Kumar rejected eight, asking the lawmakers to meet him on July 17. Representing the dissidents, former Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said the Speaker “has made himself scarce, he is not doing what he is supposed to do.”
Despite the breather because of the Speaker’s deadline, a desperate Congress has been unable to coax the rebels back into the fold despite the efforts of its troubleshooter DK Shivakumar, a skilled peace-broker who has kept the alliance running for over a year.(With Agency Inputs ).










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