Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday told the Parliament that the BJP had nothing to do with the crisis in Karnataka after over a dozen MLAs of the Congress-JD(U) coalition in the state quit the alliance.
Karnataka minister and independent MLA H Nagesh on Monday resigned and withdrew support to the HD Kumaraswamy-led government. Hours later, 21 Congress minister resigned from the Karnataka cabinet, party leader Siddaramaiah said.
“We’re committed to maintaining the dignity of parliamentary democracy. The trend of submitting resignations was started by Rahul Gandhi in Congress, it wasn’t started by us. He himself asked people to submit resignations, even senior leaders are submitting their resignations,” Singh said while replying to the issue raised by Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury.
Chowdhury alleged the BJP-ruled government is hatching a conspiracy to break the Congress-led government in Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh.
“This government is secretly hatching a conspiracy against the state government. They took our MLAs to a five-star hotel in Mumbai,” Chowdhury said during Zero Hour.
He also said that immediately after the MLAs met the Governor, vehicles, aeroplane and hotel facilities were already there.
To drive home his point, Chowdhury said if one has 10 silver and gold coins each but not facility to secure them, it does not mean that an outsider will steal them.
The defence minister said the resignation drive was started by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.
“Big leaders of Congress are resigning,” he added.
Immediately after the minister’s reply, Congress members started shouting and showing placards with “Save Democracy” written on them.
Singh had on Saturday taken a swipe at the Congress over its leadership crisis, saying that the opposition party is still searching for a chief and “it is unclear whether there is going to be any president or not”.
In Karnataka, Nagesh, who was recently inducted into the government as small scale industries minister, met Governor Vajubhai Vala at the Raj Bhavan and submitted his letter of resignation and also “unequivocally” extended support to the government of BJP, if called for by the governor.
Another Karnataka Minister, Congress’ Bidar North MLA Rahim Mahmood Khan, said he has informed senior Congress functionaries about his grievances and will take a decision after meeting them at Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara’s residence.
Over with 13 MLAs of the alliance submitting their resignations to the speaker over the weekend.
The ruling coalition faces the risk of losing its majority if the resignations are accepted.
(With PTI inputs)