Bengaluru, Dec 09: Former Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Monday resigned as opposition leader after the Congress was voted out of power in the assembly bypolls.
Meanwhile, Dinesh Gundu Rao, too, resigns as the president of the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee. However, the party has not accepted their resignations yet. Both the senior leaders will address a press conference soon.
Speaking to media, Siddaramaiah said,"We accept the people's mandate. As Leader of Opposition, I should hold up certain tenets of democracy. For the party's interest, I have resigned as the Leader of Opposition in the Karnataka Assembly. I am sending my resignation letter to our AICC president Sonia Gandhi and a copy to KC Venugopal. Karnataka Congress president Dinesh Gundu Rao, too, will recieve a copy of my resignation."
The 71-year old former CM had earlier rubbished the exit polls ahead of the bypoll results. Speaking to reporters, he said, "What happened with the exit polls in Maharashtra and Haryana elections? All these surveys are speculative."
Siddaramaia had carried out an aggressive campaign to defeat all the 13 MLAs who defected to the BJP.
Earlier in the day, the ruling BJP won six seats in the bypolls in Karnataka, while leading in six others, which implied that the party has retained its majority in the Assembly. The BJP needed to win at least six of those 15 seats to remain in a majority in the Assembly.
In the previous elections, the Congress had won in 12 of those 15 seats and the JDS of former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda, the remaining three.
Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa is now all set to retain power in Karnataka as the BJP bags the required six seats to maintain the majority in the state government.
While speaking to ANI, the chief minister said that without any problem, the BJP can give a "pro-people and a stable government".