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Karnataka Governor issues new deadline to chief minister Kumaraswamy for floor test; Congress moves Supreme Court

File photo of BS Yeddyurappa, HD Kumaraswamy and Siddaramaiah. Photograph:( Others )

WION Web Team Delhi Jul 19, 2019, 04.08 PM (IST)

Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala on Friday issued a new deadline to chief minister HD Kumaraswamy to hold the floor test to prove the majority of JD(S)-Congress government.

In a letter to the chief minister, he asked him to hold the floor test in the Assembly by 6pm today.

On Thursday, Governor, in a letter to Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy, asked him to hold the floor test by 1.30pm on Friday. 

An earlier letter to the Speaker by Governor to conduct the floor test by the end of Thursday was merely dismissed as a suggestion and not an order. 

Meanwhile, Congress has moved the Supreme Court saying that its July 17 order compromises party’s right to issue whip to its MLAs.

The petition said the July 17 order was passed without even arraying the Congress Legislature Party which has 79 MLAs in the Assembly. It further said under the Tenth Schedule a political party has a constitutional right to issue a whip to its legislators.

The court had ruled that 15 MLAs from the Congress and JD-S cannot be compelled to participate in the House proceedings.

Earlier in the day, Speaker Ramesh Kumar said that the directive of the Governor is applied to the chief minister and he cannot be forced by any time constraint.

"Unless the discussion is complete, you cannot press for the division of votes for the floor test," said the Speaker.

"Governor's order has to be followed or not, it has to be decided by the chief minister because the letter was sent to him, so he has to decide," he further added.

Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy moved confidence motion in the state Assembly at 11am on Thursday to prove the majority of his government amidst rebellion by a section of the lawmakers.

He claimed that the dissenting legislators had moved the apex court with the BJP's assistance."A situation has been created so that people lose trust in us. Without any discussion they have wanted a trust vote", Kumaraswamy said.

Senior Congress leader and former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah that a floor test in the House will not be appropriate until a clarification is attained on the Supreme Court order allowing freedom to the 15 rebel MLAs from participating in the House proceedings.

"If we go ahead with the confidence motion, if the whip is applicable and they (rebel MLAs) don't come to the house because of the SC order, it will be a big loss to the coalition government," he said.

Meanwhile, BJP leaders claimed JD(S)-Congress coalition was delaying the trust vote fearing imminent defeat due to lack of majority numbers.

(With inputs from agencies)