Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala on Thursday wrote to Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy asking him to prove majority on the floor of the Assembly by 1.30 pm on Friday, the Hindustan Times reported.
The governor had earlier suggested that Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar hold a trust vote on Thursday itself. However, the House had adjourned for the day without a floor a test. The governor’s message came after Bharatiya Janata Party leaders met and requested him to direct the Speaker to hold a floor test immediately.
Vala, in a letter to the chief minister, noted that Kumaraswamy did not appear to have the majority after the resignation of coalition MLAs from the Assembly. “The fact that 15 members have met me and tendered their resignations and coupled with two members have withdrawn their support and other attendant circumstances do prima facie indicate that you have lost majority/confidence of the House,” Vala said in the letter.
Vala said he had not intervened in the matter till now because Kumaraswamy had called the Assembly session and moved a motion for trust vote. “However, it has been reported to me that the proceedings of the house on 18-07-2019 for vote of confidence has been stalled and consequently adjourned without reaching any finality,” Vala said. “This cannot go on in a democratic set up governed by the Constitution of India.”
Sixteen disgruntled legislators have stepped down since July 1, plunging the state into a crisis. However, Congress MLA Ramalinga Reddy made a U-turn on Wednesday, and said he would vote in favour of the government during the trust vote. The ruling coalition’s strength in the 225-member Assembly is 118. With the support of two Independent legislators, the opposition BJP has 107 MLAs.
BJP legislators staged an overnight dharna inside the Vidhana Soudha on Thursday, demanding a floor test, ANI reported. MLAs slept inside the Assembly to mark their protest.
The Assembly had discussed a motion on trust vote on Thursday. Twenty legislators did not attend the Assembly proceedings on Thursday, including 17 from the ruling coalition, 12 of whom are in Mumbai. Congress MLA Shrimanth Patil was not seen in the House amid reports that he had been admitted to a Mumbai hospital. Congress leaders in the House presented photographs of Patil admitted to a hospital and details of his flights tickets, while accusing the BJP of poaching Congress MLAs.