Supreme Court says that it will hear the matter on Wednesday the plea of 2 independent MLAs seeking forthwith voting on trust motion moved by Karnataka CM in case the floor test takes place today at 6:00 PM.
Karnataka Assembly Speaker dilly-dallying on trust vote, MLAs' lawyer Mukul Rohatgi tells SC.
In an unending battle of nerves, the Karnataka assembly was adjourned till Tuesday without voting on the confidence motion moved by Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy even after three days of debate, amid ruckus by Congress and JDS, which insisted voting can await the Supreme Court ruling.
As the House debated the motion with frequent scenes of pandemonium, Congress made its intentions clear right from the beginning that voting be deferred as the apex Court was seized of pleas by two Independent MLAs on the issue of trust vote.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday is set to hear a fresh plea of two Independent Karnataka MLAs, seeking holding of the floor test "forthwith" in the state Assembly on the trust motion. The MLAs who withdrew support to the ruling coalition have sought a direction to the Kumaraswamy government to conduct the floor test on or before 5 PM on Monday.
Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar adjourned the House at 11.45 PM after repeatedly reminding the government it should honour its commitment to conclude the trust vote proceedings Monday itself, but an unrelenting Congress created a ruckus towards
the end of day's proceedings.
Kumaraswamy and Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara were not present towards the end of proceedings, when Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah told the Speaker, "100 per cent.. voting can happen tomorrow."
The Speaker, who seemed perturbed over the prolonged proceedings, stated categorically that the discussion would end by 4 PM on Tuesday and by 6 PM, the voting process would be completed.
Twenty MLAs, including 17 from the ruling coalition, skipped the proceedings Monday, besides two Independents and BSP member N Mahesh, who is supporting the government. Maintaining composure throughout, BJP members made repeated pleas to the Speaker to conclude the process on Monday itself without dragging it any further.
The assembly was adjourned for nearly two hours as Congress and JDS members demanded more time to discuss the confidence motion after the Speaker asked them to wind up quickly so that the trust vote process could be completed.
Senior Congress leader H K Patil insisted that the trust vote process should be completed after the Supreme Court decision and asserted "This is not a full House," with rebel MLAs confined in Mumbai and not able to attend the session.
"We had agreed to conclude the trust vote process on Monday, but in the light of developments in the Supreme Court and with several MLAs wanting to speak, give us more time," Kumaraswamy told the Speaker.
Kumaraswamy also claimed that a fake letter with his forged signature that he had resigned was being circulated.
"Similar rumours about me also," said the Speaker.
Kumaraswamy had moved the confidence motion on Thursday to decide the fate of the Congress-JDS government, rocked by rebellion by a section of its MLAs threatening its survival. The debate on the confidence motion prolonged to Friday, with the ruling coalition defying the two deadlines set by Governor Vajubhai Vala -- to complete the process by 1.30 PM on Friday and later by the end of the day.
The proceedings were adjourned till Monday after the Speaker extracted a commitment from the government that the process would be completed by Monday itself.
As many as 16 MLAs -- 13 from the Congress and three from JDS-- had resigned, while independent MLAs R Shankar and H Nagesh withdrew their support to the coalition government, pushing the government to the precipice.
One Congress member Ramalinga Reddy retracted from his decision to resign, saying he would support the government.
The ruling combine's strength is 117-- Congress 78, JD(S) 37, BSP 1, and nominated 1, besides the Speaker. With the support of the two independents, BJP has 107 MLAs in the 225-member House, including the nominated MLA and Speaker.
If the resignations of 15 MLAs (12 from Congress and three from JDS) are accepted or if they stay away, the ruling coalition's tally will plummet to 101, reducing the government
to a minority.
(With PTI inputs)