Congress, JD(S) in a huddle to discuss next course of action to save K’taka Govt
A DAY after the resignation of over a dozen ruling Congress-JD(S) MLAs rocked the ruling coalition in Karnataka and plunged the State into a political crisis, both parties have gone into a huddle to discuss the next course of action to save the Government. This comes even as Opposition BJP said that it is keeping a watch on the ongoing developments and indicated that the party was looking at options to form the Government. Rocked by the resignations of 10 of its MLAs, Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah has convened a meeting on Tuesday to discuss the ongoing political developments and the Assembly session, starting from July 12.
In an intimation to Congress MLAs, he has warned that their absence would be viewed seriously. The meeting gains significance amid reports that more legislators are likely to resign in the next couple of days. Congress leaders, including AICC General Secretary K C Venugopal who has camped here, have been holding a series of meetings on Sunday and strategising the plan of action in a last ditch effort to save the Government. They are also trying to reach out to party MLAs who have resigned and trying to pacify them, sources said, adding that attempts are also being made to contact those whom they suspect are ‘vulnerable’ and may resign.
Siddaramaiah, Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, Minister D K Shivakumar and KPCC Working President Eshwar Khandre are part of the meetings. Speaking to reporters, Shivakumar said that meetings are going on and ‘we are trying find a medicine and solution’ to the current crisis. “I hope that everything will be resolved soon and am ready for any sacrifices to save the Government and party.” Khandre said that attempts are on to pacify MLAs and solve the issues that they have. “We are trying to reach out to MLAs directly. There are some minor differences, which are normal. The leadership is trying to sort out them. Everything will be all right, wait and watch,” he said.
The Congress’ high command is said to have questioned state unit leaders about how they had allowed such a large number of them to happen, party sources said. They also specifically asked about the resignations of Byrati Basavaraj (K R Puram), S T Somashekar (Yashwanthpur) and Munirathna (Rajarajeshwaringar), considered close to Siddaramaiah. Meetings are also on in JD(S) circles, at the residence of party patriarch Deve Gowda. Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, who will arrive here on Sunday evening after his ten day long US trip, is expected to chair a meeting of JD(S) MLAs, State JD(S) chief H K Kumaraswamy said.
“During the meeting at the JD(S) supremos residence, the current political developments in the State were discussed. attempts are on to pacify and get three party MLAs to withdraw their resignations,” he said. Shivakumar, considered the Congress troubleshooter, met Gowda at his home and discussed the ongoing developments. The Congress-JD(S) Government has plunged into a crisis, with 13 MLAs of the alliance submitting their resignation to the Speaker, 12 of them on Saturday. Nine MLAs of the Congress and three of JD(S) reached the Speaker’s office to put in their papers on Saturday and later met Governor Vajubhai Vala at the Raj Bhawan. Another Congress MLA, Anand Singh, submitted his resignation on July 1. The ruling coalition, which has a strength of 118 in the 224-member Assembly, faces the risk of losing its majority if the resignations are accepted. Ten of the MLAs are now camping at a hotel in Mumbai.