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Dharam Singh: Trust vote on Jan 27
January 19, 2006 16:11 IST
Last Updated: January 19, 2006 21:17 IST
The beleaguered Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition ministry in Karnataka, pushed to the brink by JD(S) rebels, got a breather on Thursday with Governor T N Chaturvedi giving a week's time to Chief Minister Dharam Singh, who was asked to prove his majority in the assembly on January 27.
"A situation has arisen in which doubts have been raised on whether the government headed by Dharam Singh enjoyed majority in the assembly. I have requested the chief minister to prove that his government enjoys majority in the House on or before January 27. This, in my view, constitutes a reasonable period of time to permit the Chief Minister to probe his majority," Chaturvedi told reporters.
Dharam Singh, who has had trouble carrying on in the government with JD(S), ruled out his resignation and expressed confidence that he will prove his majority on January 27, as asked by the Governor.
Reacting sharply to Chaturvedi's decision, the Bharatiya Janata Party said that giving nine days to a 'minority' government to prove its majority was a 'grave Constitutional error.'
The BJP, which has entered into a power-sharing agreement with rebel JD (S) faction, staged a dharna on Thursday outside Raj Bhawan demanding that the Governor ask the chief minister to resign or dismiss him if he refuses.
Countering BJP's allegation that the one-week period would give help Congress indulge in 'horse-trading', Chaturvedi said horse-trading had nothing to do with Constitution. The legislative arithmetic is heavily loaded against the Dharam Singh government with BJP, JD(U) and Kumaraswamy group commanding 123 MLAs, ten more than the magical figure of 113.
The Governor said he had sent a brief, 'self-contained' report to President A P J Abdul Kalam on the political situation in the state. Asserting that he was under no pressure from anybody, Chaturvedi said it is for him to take the decision ultimately and there was no need for any recommendation to the central government.