As Congress carts its MLAs away, BJP comes up with plan B in Karnataka
Bengaluru, Jan 19: The Congress has carted its MLAs to a resort, in what is being seen as an attempt to keep its flock together from possible poaching. Four of its MLAs are not in the resort and this has to a certain extent spoilt the party of the Congress which was trying to put up a united front.
B S Yeddyurappa on the other hand returned from Delhi to Bengaluru, following which he visited the ailing Siddaganga Mutt seer, Shivakumar Swamiji in Tumakuru. He also has asked all the BJP MLAs holed up in a resort in Gurgaon to return to Bengaluru.
Does this mean that the operation to topple the ruling JD(S)-Congress coalition is over? Not yet, said a source close to Yeddyurappa. He is confident of convincing Umesh Jadhav, Ramesh Jarkiholi, Mahesh Kumathalli and B Nagendra. All these four stayed away from the Congress Legislature Party meeting.
Some within the BJP are confident that they would get these four to resign. However that would not be enough to bring down the number of the coalition. In addition to this the BJP is hopeful of convincing four more MLAs from the Congress to resign. The BJP feels that if this goes through, then a floor test could become necessary. During the floor test the BJP would hope that some more disgruntled elements from the Congress would cross vote.
In terms of numbers the job for the BJP is a Herculean one. It would need to bring down the house strength to 211 from 224. There are two independents, who have not revealed their next course of action as yet. It may be recalled that the two had resigned last week and said that they were pulling out of the government. This means that the BJP would need to convince at least 12 legislators to resign.
For the resignation ploy to work, a lot would depend on the Speaker of the House. He can keep the resignations in abeyance and ensure that the government continues to function.
For now the entire picture appears to be sketchy. The four MLAs who did not attend the CLP have not revealed anything as yet. The Congress while keeping its flock together has been trying to get in touch with the MLA, three of whom are still in Mumbai.