Bengaluru, July 17: Amid high-voltage political drama in Karnataka, all eyes are on the speaker of the state assembly- K Ramesh Kumar, too see how he conducts the floor test today. The fate of the 13-month-old coalition government of Janata Dal Secular and Congress will be decided on July 18, as it faces floor test inside the Vidhana Soudha. A ruckus erupted in Vidhan Soudha after Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy initiated a debate on the no-trust motion where leaders discussed the Supreme Court’s order on the trust vote and rebel MLAs’ attendance. However, amid the ruckus, the Speaker adjourned the House till 3 PM. Karnataka Political Row: Supreme Court Says 'MLAs Not Compelled To Participate In Trust Vote'.
The trust vote comes after resignations by MLAs from the ruling Congress-JD(S) coalition government since July 6. Ahead of the trust vote in the Vidhana Soudha, the JDS accused the BJP of destabilising the Kumaraswamy-led government in Karnataka. The Chief Minister said that a lot of issues need to be brought to the attention of the Speaker. "I haven’t come just because there is a question on whether I can run a coalition government or not. Events have shown that even the role of the Speaker has been put under jeopardy by some legislators", he said. Kumaraswamy further added saying that he is willing to face challenges.
Reports inform that the Speaker has clarified that parties are allowed to issue whip to its members. As soon as the debate is over, a floor test will be conducted in the House which will decide the fate of the Kumaraswamy government in the state.
Not Appropriate to Take Floor Test This Session: Siddaramaiah
Congress leader Siddaramaiah while debating in the Vidhana Soudha said taking a floor test in this session isn't appropriate as it is going against the Constitution. "Till we get clarification on Supreme Court's previous order, it is not appropriate to take floor test in this session which is against the Constitution", he said. Siddaramaiah added saying that tf they go ahead with the confidence motion and if the rebel MLAs don't come to the house because of the SC order, it will be a big loss to the coalition government.
Trust vote Process Should be Completed in Single day: BS Yeddyurappa
Meanwhile, Former Karnataka Chief Minister and BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa said the trust vote process should be completed in a single day. Report suggested that 21 MLAs are not present in the House. Unclear about which party they belong to.
'This House Holds SC in Highest Esteem': Karnataka Speaker
Karnataka Speaker K Ramayya Ramesh Kumar said that the House holds Supreme Court in highest esteem. "Let me make it clear to leader of Congress Legislature Party that this Office is not restraining you from exercising any of your authorities. I’ve no role to play in that", he said.
While the Speaker tried to put the House to vote for the confidence motion, the ruling Congress- JD (S) leaders created ruckus and delayed the process by insisting on debating the issue before putting it to vote.
The HD Kumaraswamy-headed government has seen 13 Congress and 3 JD(S) MLAs submit resignation letters to the Speaker. Moreover, two Independents, who quit the Ministry, too have withdrawn support to the government.
Absent Members Will Not Be Permitted to Sign the Register of Attendance: Speaker
The speaker said when a member chooses not to come, the attendants of the Vidhan Soudha will not permit them to sign the register of attendance. "The concerned member will not be entitled to draw any emolument that is meant for the member to be drawn for being present in the House," the speaker said.
The Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government is taking a floor test today that will decide if the nearly 14-month-old government will survive. Once the floor test is completed, it would decide if HD Kumaraswamy remains as the Karnataka Chief Minister or if his 13-month tenure will come to an end.