Two Karnataka MLAs moved the Supreme Court on Sunday, urging it to direct Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar to complete floor test in the Assembly before 5 pm on Monday, Bar and Bench reported. The legislators – Independent MLA H Nagesh and R Shankar from the Karnataka Pragnyavantha Janatha Party – claimed that a minority government was being allowed to continue in office.
The petition named KR Ramesh Kumar, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, and the Centre as respondents. “It is submitted that the actions of the respondents are leading to a constitutional crisis in the state of Karnataka,” ANI reported, citing the plea. “The intention of the government is to delay the trust vote and indulge in horse-trading and defections from the BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] in the meanwhile.”
Nagesh and Shankar sought enforcement of their fundamental rights that, they claimed, had been “violated with impunity”. The MLAs added that “irreparable harm and injury” would be caused to them if the top court did not grant them interim relief.
Meanwhile, the Congress held a legislative party meeting at hotel in Bengaluru ahead of the scheduled trust vote on Monday. BJP MLAs also met the party leadership. State party chief BS Yeddyurappa has called another meeting of the legislature party on Monday morning.
On Friday, the Karnataka Assembly failed to meet two deadlines – one at 1.30 pm and the other at 6 pm– given by Governor Vajubhai Vala to complete the trust vote. Kumaraswamy and Pradesh Congress Committee President Dinesh Gundu Rao filed petitions in the Supreme Court, seeking clarity on its order that the 15 rebel MLAs from the ruling coalition who have stepped down since the start of the month cannot be forced to vote on the confidence motion.
The ruling coalition’s strength in the 225-member Assembly is 118, including the rebel legislators. With the support of H Nagesh and R Shankar, the Opposition BJP has the backing of 107 MLAs.