Among the 15 candidates elected in the Karnataka by-elections to the state assembly, 13 were sworn in as MLAs on Sunday. Thirteen members, including 12 from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) took oath as lawmakers in the presence of Karnataka Assembly speaker Vishweshwara Hegade Kageri.
The new members are - Mahesh Eranagowda Kumatalli from Athani Vidhan Sabha constituency, Shrimant Balasahab Patil of Kagawada constituency, Ramesh Lakshmana Rao of Gokak constituency, Jallakuyar Rao of Shirlabhavaru. Anand Singh, Dr K. Sudhakar, BA Basavaraja, ST Somashekhar, K Gopalaiah, Sharat Kumar Bachchegowda and MC Narayana Gowda were also sworn-in as legislators. BA Basavaraja and ST Somashekhar took oath in the name of truth and loyalty, B Patil in the name of Jagjyothi Basaveshwara and the remaining ten members took oath in the name of the Lord.
"Assembly Speaker VH Kageri administered the oath to all the 12 BJP members and an Independent who was elected to the lower house in the December 5 by-elections from their constituencies," BJP's state unit G Madhusudana said.
Several dignitaries, including Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, Revenue Minister R Ashok, Home Minister Basavaraja Bommai, Primary and Secondary Education Minister S Suresh Kumar and Excise Minister H Nagesh were also present at the ceremony. Two Congress legislators - Rizwan Arshad from Shivajinagar in Bengaluru Central and HP Manjunath from Hunasuru in Mysuru district, did not take oath as they skipped the function.
The BJP on December 9 had a massive victory in the Karnataka by-elections, winning 12 out of the 15 Assembly seats. Meanwhile, the Congress party managed to win two seats and Janata Dal (Secular) (JD-S) failed to open its account in the state assembly by-polls.
With December 9's by-poll results, the BJP now has 117 MLAs and 222 legislators in the state Assembly. The four-month-old Yediyurappa government now has a majority in the 224-member House, getting to the magic number of 112. The Congress now has 68 MLAs while JD-S has 34 legislators in the House.
The bye-elections were necessitated due to the disqualification of the 14 Congress and 3 JD-S rebel legislators after they resigned from their assembly seats in mid-July in protest against the former coalition government's poor functioning.
(With ANI inputs)