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Congress-JD(S) coalition govt in Karnataka falls after 14 months, loses trust vote 99-105

Minutes before the 6pm deadline set by Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar, clashes were reported from Bengaluru and Section 144 was imposed for the next 48 hours

July 23, 2019 / 09:51 PM IST

After more than two weeks of political drama in Karnataka, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy-led 14-month Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government lost the trust vote on the floor of the Assembly on July 23.

The Congress-JD(S) combine’s tally— those voting in favour of the trust vote— plummeted to 99 legislators  in the 225-member Assembly, reducing the government to a minority.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), meanwhile, which was voting against the motion, managed to secure 105 votes.

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It remains immediately unclear as to what will happen next.

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The BJP state chief, BS Yeddyurappa, said that "it is a victory of democracy" while addressing media after the trust vote.

"People were fed up with Kumaraswamy government. I want to assure people of Karnataka that a new era of development will start now," Yeddyurappa said.

Karnataka Congress, on its part, tweeted that this is a "temporary defeat for democracy".

Earlier, Kumaraswamy had said he is ready to "happily sacrifice this (CM) position."

He also said he had no intention to drag the trust vote and added, "I apologise to the Speaker and the people of the state."

Minutes before the 6 pm deadline for the trust vote, set by Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar, clashes were reported from Bengaluru and Section 144 has currently been imposed across the city for the next 48 hours, reports suggest.

What has happened so far

The political crisis in the state started after over 13 legislators had tendered their resignations on July 6, after which more lawmakers had followed suit.

Explained: The Karnataka Crisis Timeline

As many as 16 MLAs— 13 from the Congress and three from JDS— had resigned, while Independent MLAs R Shankar and H Nagesh have withdrawn their support to the coalition government, pushing the government to the precipice.

Before the crisis, the ruling combine's strength was 117-- Congress 78, JD(S) 37, BSP 1, and nominated 1, besides the Speaker.

Kumaraswamy had moved the confidence motion in the Assembly on July 18, stating that the House expresses confidence in the ministry headed by him.

Governor Vajubhai Vala had, on July 19, wrote two missives to the chief minister, setting deadline to conclude the proceedings expressing fear that the delay only gives rise to scope for horse-trading.

He had also pointed out that he has "prima facie satisfaction" that the government has lost its majority.

The ruling coalition had, however, ignored the governor's directives, and the discussion on the trust vote had dragged on for four days, with Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar reportedly being adamant that the voting be concluded on July 22 itself.

However, after discussions throughout the day, the House was adjourned late July 22 night, with the Speaker stating that the trust vote shall be conducted before 6 pm on July 23.
Moneycontrol News

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