Government for Dummies: A Timeline of the Karnataka Crisis
The Karnataka Crisis made easy, in case you missed it.
The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear the plea of five more rebel Congress MLAs from Karnataka, along with the pending petitions of 10 other legislators seeking a direction to the Karnataka Assembly Speaker, K R Ramesh Kumar, to accept their resignation.
The bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi took note of the submission of senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi, appearing for the rebel MLAs, that they be also made parties to the pending petition, which is to be heard on Tuesday.
These MLAs are Anand Singh, K Sudhakar, N Nagaraj, Munirathna and Roshan Baig.
The apex court had on July 12, restrained the Speaker from taking any decision till July 16 on the resignation and disqualification of the 10 rebel MLAs of the ruling Congress-JD(S) coalition.
The JD(S)-Congress government headed by H D Kumaraswamy has been facing stormy weather since it came to power at the after Karnataka Assembly elections brought the coalition to power in May 2018.
There are a total of 225 seats including one nominated member in the Assembly. Elections were conducted to 223 constituencies in the initial phase. The election saw a voter turnout of 72.13 per cent, the highest in Karnataka since 1952 assembly polls. 113 seats needed for a majority out of 224.
In the election to 223 seats, parties won seats as follows
Others 3 (BSP 1+ KPJP 1+ Independent 1)
BJP, being the single largest party, formed the government under the leadership of BS Yeddyurappa, but he was forced to resign within days as he could not prove his majority in the Assembly.
A brief timeline on the imbroglio:
May 15, 2018:
Both the BJP and the Congress-JD(S) staked their claim to form government. The newly elected MLAs are moved to resorts to prevent poaching from either side.
May 16 :
Allegations on BJP. Congress alleges that BJP is trying to poach its MLAs.
Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala invites BJP to form government and asks BS Yeddyurappa to take oath as chief minister the next day.
Congress moves Supreme Court late evening against the governor’s invitation to the BJP.
SC opens its doors at midnight for an urgent hearing. But SC refuses to stay oath-taking ceremony of Yeddyurappa.
Yeddyurappa sworn in as CM
SC orders floor test at 4 pm on May 19
The Congress-JD (S) combine late at night move the SC again, this time challenging the governor’s decision to appoint BJP MLA KG Bopaiah as pro term speaker to conduct the floor test. SC says it will hear plea on May 19.
SC orders live telecast of floor test to ensure transparency in voting procedure. But without facing trust vote,Yeddyurappa resigns as Karnataka Chief Minister
Congress-JD(S) forms government. With the support of 117 elected members Congress-JD(S) alliance forms government.
HD Kumaraswamy sworn in as Chief Minister. He had earlier served as the chief minister from 2006 to 2008.
Kumaraswamy accuses the Narendra Modi government of creating false documents about him floating a company in Malaysia.
Speaker election - Former minister K R Ramesh Kumar contests as a candidate of the JD(S)-Congress alliance to the speaker election. Kumar has served as Speaker between 1994-99. Four-term MLA Suresh Kumar files his nomination as the BJP candidate for the speaker’s post. But BJP withdraws the nomination of its candidate stating it wanted to “maintain the dignity of the speaker’s post”. Ramesh Kumar gets elected unanimously.
May 24 :
Floor test - Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy wins the floor test in the Assembly. BJP MLAs dubbed the JD(S)-Congress alliance as “unholy” and walk out of the Assembly.
Assembly passes the confidence motion by voice vote in the presence of JD (S) and Congress MLAs.
May 25 :
Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly BS Yeddyurappa attacks the ruling alliance in his 40 min speech. He severely mocks the Congress for having placed itself in the hands of “a power-hungry father-son duo” of the JD(S).
June First week :
First expansion of Cabinet
H D Kumaraswamy expands his The 15-day-old ministry with the induction of 25 ministers. Fourteen ministers are from the Congress, nine from JD(S) and one each from the BSP and the KPJP. The strength of the ministry is 27, leaving seven more vacancies to be filled.
Plea against coalition government in SC.
Court refuses urgent hearing.The plea is against the formation of JD(S)-Congress government in Karnataka stating that it is not fair as the person chosen as chief minister had the support only a few members in the Assembly.
June 13 :
Congress candidate Soumya Reddy wins in Jayanagar assembly constituency. It increases the Congress strength from 79 to 80 in the Assembly.
June 15 :
Common Minimum Programme - A five-member committee is setup for drafting the CMP for the smooth functioning of the JD(S)-Congress government .
December First week :
The Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) has filed a complaint with the Bengaluru city police commissioner, against former chief minister BS Yeddyurappa and BJP leader Sriramulu over ‘operation Kamala’ in which the BJP leaders reportedly attempted to poach 10 MLAs by offering them Rs 25 crore each.
December 3 :
Reports in the media, with an audio clipping of 3.44 minutes, reveal efforts to poach 10 MLAs belonging to the Congress by BJP.
December 5: Coordination panel meeting
Coordination panel meeting called to discuss about the issues happening. Rumours that a few legislators in Congress are shifting to Mumbai ahead of the December 10 Assembly session coming in do the rounds.
Kumaraswamy decides to expand the Cabinet in order to accommodate more MLAs who are probable to shift their sides.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi and JD(S) leader HD Deve Gowda are consulted before deciding the date of Cabinet expansion. Siddaramaiah tells waiting media persons about the decision, after the two-hour long meeting of the committee.
Decides to include six members from the Congress and two from JD(S) and also to appoint MLAs as heads of corporations and boards on the same day.
December 22 :
Rearrangement in Cabinet
Rearrangement happens as suggested by the coordination panel.
February 1 - 7, 2019:
HD Kumaraswamy's voice clip released
The BJP releases a tape in which Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy, back when he was an Opposition leader in 2014 is heard demanding Rs.25 crore to give party leader Vijugouda Patil a ticket to the Legislative Council.
The clip had made headlines when it first surfaced five years ago. BJP claims this is just one of the many evidences it has to expose Kumaraswamy
Reports of a few Congress MLAs not attend Budget session despite the whip circulate.
February 4 :
Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy expresses his confidence that there will not be any problem in the passage of the state Budget.He also said that the four Congress MLAs who have rebelled are in touch with him.
February 6 :
Disgruntled Congress MLAs skip Assembly session for the second day. BJP blocked proceedings of the House, claiming the ruling coalition has lost the majority. Nine MLAs from the ruling side don’t sign the Assembly attendance of the day.
February 15 :
Budget Session - Assembly passes the budget. Kumaraswamy announces a SIT probe into the audio controversy. The BJP opposes the move. The BJP’s demand for a judicial enquiry or a House committee probe is not accepted by the government.
May 18 :
JD(S) senior leader Basavaraj Horatti stirs the political situation by calling for the dissolution of the Karnataka’s assembly and face an election.
Kumaraswamy takes to Twitter to dissuade leaders from courting controversy ahead of the Lok Sabha election result.
May 23 :
Loksabha Results - JDS-INC alliance miserably failed.BJP won 25(+1 ind) out of 28 seats.
May 24 :
Kumaraswamy offers to resign
The BJP’s landslide victory in the Lok Sabha elections triggers panic in the Congress-JD(S) coalition, with Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy offering to resign. But the Congress, sensing the volatility of the situation, asks Kumaraswamy to continue.
June First week :
Former ministers Ramalinga Reddy and R Roshan Baig of the Congress, veteran JD(S) leaders H Vishwanath and Basavaraj Horatti accuses the Congress of not only bungling in the recent Lok Sabha elections, but also preventing the coalition government from functioning smoothly.
The Cabinet is expanded with the induction of two independent MLAs. R Shankar and H Nagesh are sworn in with cabinet-rank.
The two are inducted from the JD(S) and Congress' share in the ministry, in an attempt to block chances of them shifting side to BJP.
Of the total 34 ministerial positions, Congress and JD(S) have share of 22 and 12 respectively. Shankar and Nagesh have been chosen to fill two of the three vacant seats.
During the initial days of the Kumaraswamy government, Shankar had served as a minister. But he was dropped from the cabinet during the rearrangement in December. Reports says that, Nagesh and he had sided with the BJP and written to the governor withdrawing support to the government. And when BJP failed in its attempts to topple the coalition government, the two MLAs moved back to the Ruling coalition.
July 2019 : Resignation of MLAs
July 1/2 :
2 Karnataka Congress MLAs Anand Singh and Ramesh Jarkiholi submits resignation.
July 8 :
21 Congress ministers in Karnataka tendered their resignation on Monday allowing the party leadership to lure rebel legislators back by offering them Cabinet berths.
The 34-member Cabinet had 22 Congress ministers and 12 from the JD(S). Except for R Shankar who was made a minister under its quota, the rest 21 Congress ministers have resigned.
July 9 :
A total of 13 MLAs submitted the resignation.