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Karnataka floor test LIVE: Governor intervenes after Congress-JDS seek to delay trust vote, directs Speaker to wrap up proceedings today

FE Online
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Karnataka floor test Live Updates: Speaking during discussion ahead of trust vote in Karnataka Assembly, Congress leader DK Shivakumar triggered a storm accusing the BJP of 'kidnapping' its MLA from a Mumbai resort. Shivakumar said Congress MLA Shreemath Patil was taken to Mumbai and submitted to a hospital by the BJP. The saffron party rejected the Congress' claims and urged Governor to step in saying the Congress was trying to delay the trust vote.

Earlier, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLAs created ruckus inside the Vidhan Soudha after Speaker Ramesh Kumar said that whip will be applied to all the MLAs. The BJP objected to this, saying the chair can't violating the Supreme Court's order and he can't force MLAs to attend the House proceedings. According to multiple media reports, 21 MLAs from both Congress-JD(S) and BJP were missing from the House on the day designated by the Speaker for trust vote. The lone BSP MLA N Mahesh who had quit the government earlier this year but assured that he will support the government from outside, as well as two independent MLAs were also missing from the House. As soon as House met at 11 am, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy moved a motion to seek trust vote. The Assembly witnessed a drama after the coalition sought to delay voting on the confidence motion. Opposition BJP's BS Yeddyurappa said that the trust vote should be completed in a single day. However, Kumaraswamy said that the wants to tell the truth and hinted that the BJP was responsible for the current crisis. "There should be a discussion. Why have we reached this stage today? I don’t want to discuss what the Supreme Court has said. I can't say that you have to finish discussion within a particular time frame," he said. "I have self respect and so do my ministers. I have to make some clarifications. Who is responsible for destabilising this government?" the CM added.

The 14-month-old Congress-JD(S) coalition government will fall short of the majority mark -- 113, if the 16 rebel MLAs decide to stay away from the Assembly proceedings. A total of 13 Congress, three JD(S) and two independent MLAs have resigned so far, reducing the numbers of the coalition from 118 (including the Speaker) to 100. The two independents MLAs have now pledged support to the BJP which is the single largest party with 105 MLAs. Technically, the coalition's strength stands at 118 and it will reduce if and when the resignations are accepted by the Speaker or if they are disqualified. At least 12 rebel MLAs are still holed up in the Mumbai hotel.