Union Minister and BJP leader DV Sadananda Gowda said senior party leader BS Yeddyurappa will be the chief minister of Karnataka if a new government is formed in the state after 11 legislators of the ruling alliance submitted their resignation at the Speaker's office on Saturday.
Dealing another blow to the wobbly Congress-JD(S) government in Karnataka led by HD Kumaraswamy, the legislators submitted their resignations at the Speaker's office. However, assembly Speaker Ramesh Kumar was not in his office when the legislators went there to submit their resignation, sources said.
Later, Kumar told reporters that 11 legislators submitted their resignation at his office.
"...11 of them have submitted resignation letters. I told officials to take the letters and issue acknowledgement. Tomorrow the office will be closed...Monday I have prior engagement, so on Tuesday I will go to office and take further action, in accordance with rules," he said.
"They thought it's high time to come out of that party and resigned from legislators post as they felt that continuing as MLAs was not good in the larger interest of their constituency and state... The Governor is the supreme authority, as per the constitutional mandate if he calls us, certainly we are ready to form the government. We are the single largest party, we have got 105 people with us," Gowda said on being asked if the BJP will form the government in Karnataka.
To a question on the future of the government, Kumar said, "Let's wait and see, I have nothing to do with it."
"Whether the government will fall or survive, it will be decided in the Assembly...," he added.
Later, the legislators went to the Raj Bhavan to meet Governor Vajubhai Vala.
As a last bid, Congress's "trouble shooter" and Minister DK Shivakumar met the legislators and tried to convince them. The development comes days after two Congress legislators Anand Singh and Ramesh Jarkiholi sent in their resignation to the Speaker.
Speaker Ramesh Kumar, however, had said, he had received only Singh's resignation, but had no information on that of Jarkiholi. Jarkiholi, however, submitted his resignation on Saturday.
The coalition's strength in the 224-member Assembly stands at 118 (Congress-78, JD(S)-37, BSP-1 and Independents-2), besides the Speaker. This includes MLAs who have resigned, as their resignations are yet to be accepted by the Speaker.
The BJP has 105 MLAs in the House, where half-way mark is 113. The ruling coalition leaders had feared onslaught by the BJP to destabalise the government after rout in the Lok Sabha seats, where both parties had won just one seat each.
The BJP had won 25 out of 27 seats it had contested and independent candidate Sumalatha Ambareesh supported by it had won in Mandya.
Speaking to reporters, Yeddyurappa said: "People are watching the way DK Shivakumar is behaving. He tore resignation letters of some of the MLAs inside the Speaker's office, who had went to resign, it is condemnable."
(With PTI inputs)