Bengaluru: A section of Janata Dal (Secular) legislators have expressed their strong reservations over supporting a no-confidence motion being moved by Congress MLCs' to unseat D.H. Shankarmurthy from the post of Legislative Council chiarman.
They felt the unceremonious removal of the chairman was not a right thing to do at this juncture when people were talking about a tacit understanding between the Congress and the JD(S) ahead of the general polls. In the 75-member House, the Congress has 32 members, followed by BJP with 23 (including the chairman), JD(S) 13, three Congress co-members and two independents with two seats vacant. While one seat is vacant due to the demise of Ms Vimala Gowda, the other seat remains vacant as the proposal to make C.M. Lingappa is pending before the governor.
To get the motion passed, a minimum of 37 votes are sufficient for the current strength of 73 members. However, the Congress has to depend on JD(S) support to unseat Shankarmurthy.
The JD(S) Floor Leader Basavaraja Horatti who holds a record of winning his seat a seventh time, slammed the Congress for moving the no confidence motion in the current situation, and categorically stated that he was not ready to occupy the chairman post at any cost. None would have faulted the Congress in staking its claim to the chairman post had Shankarmurthy been elevated as governor of a state. When no such move has been made, it was improper on the part of Congress to unseat the current chairman. He would abide by the party decision but would not accept the chairman post.
Horatti said he had strongly objected when Puttanna of JD(S) was removed from the post of deputy chairman who had rubbed shoulders with JD(S) National President H.D. Deve Gowda and State JD(S) President H.D. Kumaraswamy on various issues, to accommodate Maritibbe Gowda. At that time, the BJP too played a dirty game by joining hands with his own party to remove Puttanna.
Meanwhile, sources told Deccan Chronicle that Leader of Opposition K.S. Eshwarappa spoke to Kumaraswamy on the no-confidence motion being moved by the Congress, and sought his support to defeat the motion. However, the former Chief Minister pleaded ignorance on the motion. The JD(S) may spell out its stand after a meeting of top leaders.