Politics

Congress may move Supreme Court if the Karnataka governor does not invite HD Kumaraswamy

he Congress may move Supreme Court if the Karnataka governor does not invite HD Kumaraswamy of the Janata Dal (Secular) to form the new government in the state with the help of the grand old party, sources said on Wednesday.

“In case, the governor doesn’t call us, we believe that it is a strong case to go to the Supreme Court,” one of the party’s senior legal brains said.

Sources in the Congress added that its top legal brains such as Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Kapil Sibal and Vivek Tankha may be roped in to challenge any “adverse” decision of governor Vajubhai Vala.

The Congress lent unconditional support to former prime minister HD Deve Gowda’s son to form the government in the state where a hung assembly has emerged with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as the largest party with 104 seats.

Also read: Interactive map of the Karnataka election results

The Congress won 78 seats and JD(S) 37, and they said they have the numbers to run the 224-member House. The bloc also claimed the support of two independent candidates and an MLA of the Bahujan Samaj Party, which is an ally of Deve Gowda’s party.

“Denial by govnor 2cong JDS after assertion of joint numbers wld b illegal,unctal & contrary to(1) kavlekar judgement of Goa by SC(2) Sarkaria Comm (3) rule that single party rule inapplicable where anr combination has more numbers(4) against KR Narayanan, Goa, manipur precedents (sic),” Singhvi tweeted on Wednesday.

Abhishek Singhvi

@DrAMSinghvi

Denial by govnor 2cong JDS after assertion of joint numbers wld b illegal,unctal & contrary to(1) kavlekar judgement of Goa by SC(2) Sarkaria Comm (3) rule that single party rule inapplicable where anr combination has more numbers(4) against KR Narayanan, Goa, manipur precedents

Ironically, the Congress counsels may cite the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Goa government formation — which went against the Congress — to argue their case in Karnataka.

The BJP quickly formed a post-poll coalition and claimed the chief minister’s chair after the Goa election last year even as the Congress emerged as the largest party but fell short of a majority.

Goa governor Mridula Sinha invited the coalition to form the government, ignoring the Congress’ claim that the largest party should be given the first chance to show its strength.

The bench comprising the then Chief Justice JS Khehar, justice RK Agrawal and justice Ranjan Gogoi rejected the Congress’ arguments and asked for a quick floor test. The court also ruled that since the Congress did not demonstrate its numbers, the governor was free to apply “discretionary powers”.

“When no political party is in majority, then it is the bounden duty of the governor to see who can form the government. If nothing happens, then the governor is duty-bound to call the leader of the single largest party but if someone goes to the governor with a list of supporters, then it is a different issue altogether,” the bench said.

The BJP’s Karnataka chief ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa met the governor on Wednesday, the second time in two days, and requested him to invite his party to form the government “as early as possible”.

The governor, he said, assured him that he would take an “appropriate” decision as early as possible.

“Clearly, the Karnataka governor knows now the size of the declared and asserted coalition who has written to him. So calling the single party logic doesn’t apply in this fractured mandate,” a prominent legal brain of the Congress said.

“However, we are apprehensive that politics might take over precedence,” the senior Congress leader added.

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