Yeddurappa faces crisis, to prove majority by Oct 12


Bangalore : Karnataka Governor H.R. Bhardwaj Wednesday asked Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa to prove majority on the floor of the state assembly by Oct 12 after 19 lawmakers in a joint letter to him withdrew their support to the first Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in southern India.

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Of the 19 legislators, 14 belong to Yeddyurappa’s ruling party and five are Independents who extended support to it as it fell short of majority to form the government after the May 2008 elections to the 225-member state legislative assembly.

“Taking into consideration the withdrawal of support by 19 legislators, including seven ministers, the governor has requested the chief minister to prove that his government has majority support in the legislative assembly through a confidence motion on or before October 12 by 5 p.m.,” a communique from Raj Bhavan said.

In asking Yeddyurappa to prove that he still enjoyed majority on the floor of the house by Tuesday, the governor also factored the recommendation of the chief minister to drop four Independents who are ministers for withdrawing support to his government.

The four ministers are Agriculture Marketing and Small Scale Industries Minister Shivaraj S. Tangadagi, Textile and Sericulture Minister Venkataramanappa, Social Welfare Minister P.M. Narayana Swamy and Youth Services and Prisons Minister D. Sudhakar.

“I have recommended the governor to drop the four Independent ministers for expressing lack of confidence in me and roping in a section of our party legislators to revolt against my leadership,” Yeddyurappa told reporters after an emergency cabinet meeting at the state secretariat.

Among the 19 lawmakers who withdrew support to the government are three BJP ministers – M.P. Renukacharya (Excise), Anand Asnotikar (Fisheries) and Balachandra Jarkiholi (Municipalities and Local Bodies).

This is the second serious political crisis confronting Yeddyurappa since he became the chief minister in May 2008. In October-November last year, mine owners and ministers Reddy brothers — Janardhana and Karunakara — revolted against Yeddyurappa, demanding leadership change. The Reddy brothers were placated at the intervention of the BJP central leadership, and Yeddiurappa backed off from his confrontationist stance.