Fate of Karnataka uncertain, HC judgment awaited

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BS Yeddyurappa
Bangalore, Oct 14: Even though Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa on Thursday, Oct 14 managed to survive the second trust vote, the future of the state is still uncertain as a lot depends on the Karnataka High Court judgment expected on Monday, Oct 18.

The High Court on Monday, Oct 18 will pass its verdict on the joint writ petition filed by the 16 disqualified dissident MLAs, who were denied the opportunity to participate in neither of the two Assembly floor tests.

The 11 BJP MLAs and five independents were disqualified by the Speaker KG Bopaiah just hours ahead of the first trust vote on Oct 11 under the anti-defection laws.

Angered by the disqualification, the rebel MLAs moved the High Court against the Speaker and his role. Incidentally, it was the HC that kept the MLAs from voting in the second trust vote on Oct 14.

The second floor test was held after Governor HR Bharadwaj, who along with the Speaker has sparked off a row on his constitutional role, allowed the Chief Minister to hold a second trust vote after the Opposition parties, JD(S) and Congress, cried foul following the first one.

Now, the snowballing political drama has reached a state of total incertitude as the state waits for the High Court's judgment.

The High Court will be essentially focusing on the role of Speaker and examining the allegations that he sided with the government at the time of crisis.

If the Court wishes, it can overthrow the disqualification of the rebel MLAs, which will yet again upset the majority in the Assembly.

The BSY-led BJP government held on to power with a majority of 106 in a reduced house of 208 members. If the rebel MLAs are back, the house will go back to its original strength of 224, and the JD(S)-Congress combine, which has had 100 so far would be 16 MLAs stronger.

But the question is, should the people of Karnataka, battered by scandal after scandal, brace for a third trust vote?

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