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Bahujan Samaj Party expels lone Karnataka MLA for abstaining from trust vote

File photo of Mayawati. Photograph:( ANI )

ANI New Delhi, Delhi, India Jul 24, 2019, 08.02 AM (IST)

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) on Tuesday expelled its lone MLA from Karnataka N Mahesh for abstaining from voting on the trust motion, despite being directed by the party high command to vote in favour of the Congress-JD(S) coalition.

"Despite directions from party high command to vote in favour of HD Kumaraswamy, BSP MLA N Mahesh did not attend the trust vote and violated directions, which is an act of indiscipline. Party has taken this seriously and expelled him with immediate effect," BSP supremo Mayawati tweeted.

Mahesh was not present in the Assembly during the trust vote, which was moved by Kumaraswamy.

The 14-month-old Congress JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka fell on Tuesday after it was defeated on the floor of the Karnataka Assembly with about 20 MLAs of the ruling coalition defying their party whips and absenting from voting on the confidence motion.

The coalition got 99 votes as against 105 of the opposition.

Ahead of the trust vote, Mayawati had on Sunday directed Mahesh to vote in support of the coalition.

In the 224-member House, only 204 were present and voted in the division pressed by Leader of the Opposition BS Yeddyurappa after the voice vote.

He and other BJP members showed victory signs in the House while the ruling coalition members quietly walked out.

The defeat marks the end of an uneasy coalition that was formed after the assembly polls in May 2018, which returned a hung verdict after three main parties in the state- Congress, BJP and the JD(S) fought each other in the polls.

There were differences between the coalition partners that often came to the surface but they carried on against the threat of BJP.