You can form govt by Monday or Tuesday, Karnataka CM tells BJP

Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy today asserted he would not misuse power to save his government, as he spoke on the confidence motion moved by him in the Assembly to decide the fate of his Ministry.

In his speech seeking the trust vote with Governor Vajubhai Vala asking him to prove his majority by 1.30 p.m today, Kumaraswamy charged that an atmosphere was created from day one that “this government will go” and it was unstable. “After 14 months (in power), we have come to the final stage,” Kumaraswamy said.

“Let’s have discussion. You can still form government. Nothing urgent. You can do it on Monday or Tuesday also. I am not going to misuse power,” Kumaraswamy told the BJP.

Kumaraswamy also told BJP, “From the day I came to power, I know it won’t be for long… how long you will sit in power, I am here to see… how stable your government will be with the people who are now helping you.”

He also asked the BJP why it was in a hurry to end the trust vote debate in one day if it was sure of its numbers. The Chief Minister accused the BJP of resorting to ways to circumvent the anti-defection law.

Hitting out at the opposition party in the State, he alleged legislators were offered Rs 40-50 crore to lure them and asked whose money was it. Meanwhile, JDS MLA Srinivas Gowda alleged that he was offered Rs 5 crore bribe by the BJP to defect to bring down the government.

Kumaraswamy began his speech after Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar made it clear when the House commenced its proceedings there was no scope for any other discussion except the trust vote.

The Speaker dismissed suggestions that he was trying to delay the vote on the confidence motion. “I don’t have to be partisan,” Kumar said, expressing anguish over suggestions that he was trying to delay the trust vote.

He said there was discussion and ‘indirect comments’ made that he was delaying the process (vote of confidence).
After making his remarks, the Speaker asked the Chief Minister to speak on the debate on the trust vote, saying, “I am clear… no scope for any other discussion (except the trust vote).”

Within hours after the confidence motion could not take place with the Speaker adjourning the day’s proceedings in the Assembly, the Governor had Thursday shot off the letter to the Chief Minister setting the deadline.

The Governor had observed that resignation of 15 MLAs of the ruling JDS-Congress and withdrawal of support by two independents ‘prima facie’ indicated Kumaraswamy has lost the confidence of the House. The Governor had also sent a missive earlier to the Speaker to conclude the trust vote proceedings by the end of the day.