Congress asks Karnataka rebel MLAs to vote for coalition, threatens anti-defection law

Congress has issued a whip in the Karnataka assembly, Ganesh Hukkeri, and warned all rebel MLAs to vote in favour of the party and the coalition government. The party has also threatened to take action as per the anti-defection law if they do not vote for the party.

The party has asked all rebel MLAs to attend Friday’s assembly session to pass the finance bill and other matters, failing which the absent MLAs will be disqualified under the anti-defection law.

Hukkeri has said if there’s a need to vote, MLAs must vote in favour of the party. “If there’s a violation of this, there would be action as per the anti-defection law,” he said.

13 Congress MLAs have resigned so far along with 3 of JD(S). After Speaker KR Ramesh rejected the resignations of 8 MLAs earlier, 10 of them reached his office on Thursday evening after a Supreme Court directive and tendered fresh resignations.

The Speaker later addressed the media after meeting the group of MLAs and said that they have submitted the resignations again, now in the right format.

KR Ramesh added that he will consider the fresh resignations on Thursday night.

The resignation of 16 MLAs (13 from Congress and three from JDS) has pushed the coalition government to the brink of collapse. Two independent MLAs have also withdrawn support to the coalition government.

Meanwhile, JDS has filed an application asking the Speaker to disqualify the three rebel MLAs. The Speaker has said the application is not in the correct format.