- The floor test will take place at 11 am on July 18
- Karnataka's ruling coalition is on the edge after series of resignations
- Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy had on Friday called for a trust vote
Karnataka's ruling Congress-Janata Dal Secular coalition, on the edge after a series of resignations, will take a floor test on Thursday. The floor test will take place after a debate that starts at 11 am on July 18, said Congress's Siddaramaiah after a meeting of a panel that decides the agenda of the state assembly.
The coalition, which has been wobbly since it came to power last May, was jolted by 18 resignations over the past two weeks leading to a political crisis in Karnataka.
Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy had on Friday called for a trust vote to prove his strength on the floor of the house, declaring that his government was stable. The same day, the Congress, JDS and BJP packed off their lawmakers to various resorts, sequestering them from any poaching attempts. "I have full confidence of winning, why should we worry," Mr Kumaraswamy told reporters.
Mr Siddaramaiah made a similar claim. "I am confident that we will win confidence motion," the former chief minister told NDTV.
This morning, rival BJP also submitted notice to move a no-confidence motion against the government.
The ruling partners continue their attempts - fruitless so far - to bring back the rebels whose resignations have endangered their government.
Sixteen legislators of the JDS-Congress coalition and two independent lawmakers have resigned.
If the resignations are accepted, the coalition's 118 members will come down to 100 and the majority mark will drop from 113 to 105. Rival BJP has 105 members and the support of the two Independents, which takes its tally to 107.
Speaker Ramesh Kumar has yet to accept the resignations. He told the Supreme Court on Friday that he would need time to decide whether the resignations were coerced or voluntary. He also said many of the rebel lawmakers faced disqualification.
The Supreme Court has stopped the Speaker from either accepting the resignation or disqualifying any lawmaker till Tuesday.
Ten of the rebels, who flew to Mumbai after resigning on July 6 and have been staying at the five-star hotel Renaissance, wrote again to the police asking for protection against Congress and JDS leaders who may try to meet them.
The group, on court orders, flew to Bengaluru on Thursday and submitted their resignations again to the Speaker, who had rejected many of the letters claiming they were not in the correct format.
The rebels had approached the top court accusing the Speaker of stalling to help the ruling coalition.
Last week, Congress's chief troubleshooter DK Shivakumar made a futile attempt to meet the rebels in Mumbai. He staked out for hours outside the hotel before being detained by the police and taken straight to the airport, where he took a flight back to Bengaluru.
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