BJP turns up heat, demands CM to tender resignation

BJP leader K S Eshwarappa addresses party MLAs during a dharna demanding resignation of Chief Minister Kumaraswamy, in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue on Vidhana Soudha premises, in Bengaluru on Wednesday. DH Photo

A day after Assembly Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar rejected resignation letters of nine rebel MLAs, the BJP state unit on Wednesday staged a dharna in front of Mahatma Gandhi statue, demanding that Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy should immediately step down.

The JD(S)-Congress coalition government has become minority following resignation of 14 MLAs. Governor Vajubhai Vala should dismiss the JD(S)-Congress coalition government immediately, Yeddyurappa said addressing his partymen.

Almost all BJP legislators took part in dharna. Interestingly, the Congress leaders had staged dharna at the same place on Tuesday accusing the BJP of destabilising the coalition government.

The BJP took to protest as Speaker Ramesh Kumar’s decision on Tuesday offered an opportunity to the Congress-JD(S) leaders to save the coalition by pacifying the rebels. Kumar rejected the resignation letters as they were not in "prescribed format." He will be examining the resignation letters of the remaining five MLAs on July 12 and 15.

Earlier, speaking to reporters, Yeddyurappa said if the resignation letters were not in format, the MLAs will submit the letters again. "The Speaker is a knowledgeable person. I wonder why he is delaying accepting the resignation of the six MLAs," he added.

Asked about the Congress’ plan to seek disqualification of rebel MLAs, the BJP leader said let the law take its own course.

"I know the Speaker will follow the rule book and uphold the Constitution. But I don’t understand why he (Speaker) did not take action against D K Shivakumar (Congress leader) who tore up the resignation of one of the MLAs at his office," he said.

Later, the BJP leaders, including Yeddyurappa, Jagadish Shettar and K S Eshwarappa met Governor Vajubhai Vala at Raj Bhavan and urged him to direct the chief minister to step down.

Complaint against Speaker

In a memorandum submitted to the Governor, the BJP took exception to the Speaker for "delaying" accepting rebel MLAs’ resignation and allowing "minority government" to function. The saffron party urged the Governor to give an appropriate direction to the Speaker.

The leaders also met the Speaker at Vidhana Soudha and urged him to dispose of the rebels' resignation at the earliest.

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