UPDATE at 13:06
Congress MLA Roshan Baig has resigned from his post, likely to join BJP:
Slamming the Opposition's habit of accusing the BJP for their failures, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi, on Tuesday has said that as directed by former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi to resign from their posts, members are resigning, denying BJP's hand in the recent exodus of Karnataka MLAs resigning.
"It is their habit to blame BJP for their failures. As Rajnath Singh said yesterday - 'As their leader Rahul Gandhi had told people to resign, people are resigning.' Congress has become leaderless and their former leader had told them to resign due to which Milind Deora and Jyotiraditya Scindia resigned. Similarly, many are resigning in Karnataka, How is it related to us?," he said addressing reporters after the BJP parliamentary meet in Delhi.
Denying any attempts of 'Operation Lotus', he also said that he had no idea why BJP Karnataka chief Yeddyurappa's aide was seen at the Mumbai airport where the rebel MLAs were headed, citing that it was no indication of BJP leaders' involvement in it.
Earlier in the day, resuming office amidst the crisis rocking the JD(S)-Congress coalition government in Karnataka, Speaker K.R Ramesh Kumar, who has been absent from his office since Saturday has called all rebel MLAs personally and has asked for their resignations to be given by hand after meeting him with an appointment. He had also said that he will read the resignation letters submitted to his office and will act accordingly, upholding the Constitution.
"I had informed well in advance that I will not be there on Monday and will come on Tuesday. If anyone has a suspicion, I can't help them. The job of my staff is to accept the (resignation) letters and acknowledge it. I will look at what is written. These rebels are not my relatives, I am not under any pressure," he said, speaking to reporters at the Vidhan Soudha in Bengaluru.
He added that he will be reading the rules and if he is convinced that the resignations are voluntary, he can accept their resignations.
In a desperate attempt to save the fractured JD(S)-Congress coalition government in Karnataka, the grand old party has held a Congress Legislative Party (CLP) meeting on Tuesday at 9:30 AM in the state capital after 13 MLAs resigned from their posts on Saturday.
Earlier on Monday, the rebel MLAs including 10 of Congress, two of JD(S) and two Independents, left for Goa in the evening and were being accompanied by Mohit Bhartiya, president of the Mumbai BJP Yuva Morcha, sources said.
Fearing more resignations, JD(S) has reportedly moved all its MLAs to a Bengaluru resort to prevent more defections from the party on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Congress has urged the Speaker to accept resignations of 13 Congress-JD(S) legislators, alleging that rules have not been followed during its submission.
With respect to Congress, which had 79 MLAs in total - 10 have submitted their resignations bring its total to 69 now. Excluding the speaker, out of the 68 members, Roshan Baig has refused to attend the CLP meeting saying he will resign, 4 MLAs have reported unwell - K Sudhakar, MTB Nagraj, Nagendra, Thukaram, 2 MLAs are absent without citing their reasons - Anjali Nimbalkar and Ramappa while MLA Fathima has stated personal commitments and MLA Raje Gowda has gone to a naturopathy spa with family.
Overall government numbers:
On Saturday, 13 Congress-JD(S) MLAs had resigned including 1 Independent. The JD(S)-Congress coalition’s total strength came down to 117 after (Congress-78, JD(S)-37, BSP-1 and Independents-1) after Nagesh withdrew his support from the government, besides the Speaker.
If the resignations of the 13 Congress-JD(S) MLAs are accepted by the Speaker, the Congress-JD(S) coalition’s numbers will come down to 104, besides the vote of the Speaker. If the Speaker accepts the 13 resignations, the Karnataka Legislative Assembly will come down to 212 out of 225, which will leave the half-way mark to 106. As the saffron party has 107 MLAs in its support now, it can call a trust vote and form a government in the state