Congress shies from demanding Karnataka government’s sack

May 16th, 2011 - 9:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi, May 16 (IANS) The Congress Monday shied from giving its nod to the Karnataka governor’s reported recommendation for dismissal of the state government and instead appealed to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to get its Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa to resign, calling his government “illegal”.

The Congress came down heavily on the opposition party over the continuance of Yeddyurappa and Karnataka assembly Speaker K.G. Bopaiah against the backdrop of a Supreme Court ruling Friday on the “hasty” disqualification of 16 MLAs in October 2010 ahead of Yeddyurappa’s trust vote.

Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari quoted from the observations of the apex court judgment to ask whether Yeddyurappa or Bopaiah had any “moral right” to continue in office.

“Does the chief minister and the speaker have the moral right to continue even for a single moment after these observations of the Supreme Court on their conduct?” Tewari asked during his daily briefing here.

“The reality is that from Oct 11, 2010, the BJP has been running an illegal government based upon a manufactured majority that was obtained by the abuse of constitutional office. And it does not end there. When the speaker was doing his job, the BJP’s central leadership, including the leader of the opposition and former chairperson of the NDA, were lauding him,” he added.

The Congress spokesperson said this showed how much respect the BJP had for the constitution, and added that the opposition party had “succeeded in elevating sophistry to the fine art” of trickery and “conjured” up a majority.

Feigning ignorance on the contents of Governor H.R. Bhardwaj’s report, Tewari said the central government would have to take a call on what needed to be done on the latter’s recommendations. He noted that the party had already highlighted the question of morality involved in the continuation of both the chief minister and speaker.

He also did not wish to speculate whether the centre would impose president’s rule in Karnataka. On the reasons for not demanding Yeddyurappa’s resignation, he said resignation was demanded from persons whom you “expect to uphold morality”.

“If there was even an iota of morality in the chief minister or the speaker, they would have resigned immediately after the supreme court strictures,” he added.

Faced with rebellion from 11 BJP MLAs and five independents, the Yeddyurappa government sought their disqualification a day ahead of a confidence vote in October last year and the speaker within a day ruled in favour of their disqualification.

Later, the BJP government won the floor test in October 2010. The Karnataka High Court had upheld the speaker’s order. But the apex court on an appeal from the MLAs, restored their membership of the assembly on May 13.

The 11 BJP MLAs extended their support to the Yeddyurappa government, thereby giving a majority to the BJP in the 225-member Karnataka assembly.

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