Two Karnataka Congress MLAs resigned from the state Assembly on Monday, bringing down the party’s strength in the House to 77. Anand Singh represented Vijaynagara in Ballari district in the Assembly while Ramesh Jarkiholi was elected from Gokak in Belagavi district.
The coalition led by the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) now have the support of 117 members – 77 of the Congress, 37 of the JD(S), one of the Bahujan Samaj Party and two independent MLAs. The Bharatiya Janata Party has 105 members, while the majority mark is 113.
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, who is on a personal visit to the United States, tweeted that he was tracking political developments in the state. “I am watching all the developments from here,” he said. “BJP is daydreaming about destabilising the government.”
Singh submitted his resignation letter to Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar on Monday morning and met Governor Vajubhai Vala at the Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru in the afternoon. “I have tendered my resignation,” News9 quoted him as saying. “There are several reasons for why I have tendered my resignation. I will be at fault if I do not raise my voice against the injustice meted to my district. My first priority is my district and job creation for youths.”
Kumar, however, denied meeting Singh or receiving his resignation letter. “Nobody has contacted or met me,” ANI quoted Kumar as saying. “I have got nothing to do with political developments and I will accept resignations even if 20 members resign. I am not aware of any such resignation. I have not met any leader, not even Anand Singh.”
Singh said he had submitted his resignation letter to the Speaker but he “might not have received it due to some reason”. “I will once again send my resignation letter to the speaker,” he said.
Singh submitted his resignation, opposing HD Kumaraswamy government’s decision to sell 3667.31 acres to JSW Steel in Ballari district for mining purposes, The Hindu reported.
“I have placed my demand before the government,” Singh said after meeting the governor. “I will take my next decision after seeing the response from the government on executing lease-cum-sale agreement on land to JSW Steel.”
Former Chief Minister K Siddaramaiah has called for a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party at his residence in Bengaluru following the resignations, ANI reported.
Singh, who served as the tourism minister in the BJP government from 2008 to 2013, moved to the Congress ahead of the 2018 Assembly elections, The Hindu reported. In January, Singh was assaulted by fellow Congress legislator JN Ganesh at a resort near Bengaluru. The Congress had moved its legislators to the resort amid fears of horse trading by the BJP.
Ganesh, who was suspended from the party following the incident, later accused Singh of attacking him first, and also alleged in a Facebook post that Singh had made derogatory comments about his caste and family.