The drama in Karnataka politics continues to unfold as the rebel MLAs stationed in Mumbai hotel have submitted yet another letter to the city police saying that they have no intention of meeting with the Congress leaders Kamal Nath, Mallikarjun Kharge, G Parameshwar and JD(S) leaders Deve Gowda and HD Kumaraswamy who are visiting them.The rebel MLAs have said that they perceive threat from the leaders flying down to Mumbai and requested for protection.
The letter has been signed by most of the rebel MLAs and has been submitted to the Mumbai police.
"We have absolutely no intentions in meeting Mallikarjun Kharge or Gulam Nabi Azad or any congress dignitaries or functionaries from Maharashtra or Karnataka Congress team leaders or any other political leader we anticipate serious threat from them and so we here by request to kindly make necessary arrangements to stop these people from meeting us in case the situation arises," the letter said.
The letter comes with Congress and JD(S) making frantic meetings with MLAs including with rebel MLAs like MTB Nagaraj. HD Kumaraswamy on Saturday had said in the Karnataka assembly that he is ready for a trust vote. The Congress-JD(S) coalition has also shown confidence in bringing back rebel MLAs back into their fold.
The coalition government is on a sticky wicket with 16 MLAs -- 13 of the Congress and three of the JD(S) -- resigning from their assembly membership. Besides, two independent legislators, who were made ministers recently to provide stability, have quit the cabinet.
The independents -- H Nagesh and R Shankar -- withdrew support to the coalition government and are now supporting the BJP. The ruling coalition's strength in the House is 116 (Congress 78, JD(S) 37 and BSP one), besides the Speaker. With the support of the two independents, the opposition BJP has 107 MLAs in the 224-member House.
If the resignations of the 16 MLAs are accepted, the ruling coalition's tally will be reduced to 100. The speaker has a vote too.