BJP in Karnataka may be rejoicing after winning the Karnataka trust vote. But the party leaders are engaged in detailed discussion to ensure the numbers align well and Yeddyurappa retains the CM's throne for the remaining term.
Bengaluru: While celebrations were witnessed in 2018 at the BJP headquarters and party president BS Yeddyurappa's house, the joy didn't last long due to the unexpected union of the Congress and the JD(S).
Cut to 2019.
Celebrations continue at the BJP camp, but Yeddyurappa is cautious. He hasn't hurried to the Governor's office and staked claim to form the government after romping home 105 in the Karnataka trust vote leading to incumbent chief minister HD Kumaraswamy's resignation.
1. The number game
Let's not forget that Yeddyurappa and the BJP have won the floor test by a margin of just six votes (Congress-JD(S) coalition had 99 votes). At any given point in time, the tables could turn. Sources say that the coalition aims to target just 12 of the rebel MLAs with the disqualification process. The remaining members could be lured back into the party. BJP sources say that the Bengaluru MLAs referred to by the code word SBM (ST Somashekhar, Byrathi Basavaraj and Muniratna) cannot be trusted as they are Congress leader Siddaramaiah's confidantes. Hence, BJP's game plan is to target six more MLAs, especially from the north Karnataka region.
2. Disqualification of rebels
The 15 rebel MLAs lodged in Mumbai have to be protected by the BJP. In order to avert the Speaker from disqualifying the rebels, sources say that Yeddyurappa's plan is to form the government, immediately prove his majority and then sack the Speaker.
The Supreme Court, in its earlier hearing, had ordered the Speaker to take a decision on the resignation/disqualification of the dissident MLAs.
When current Speaker Ramesh Kumar summoned the rebels, they sought four-weeks' time, to ensure Yeddyurappa implements his game plan, say sources.
3. Siddaramaiah's plan backfired
The BJP had targeted 12 of the MLAs from the coalition camp. However, Congress leader Siddaramaiah played along and sent three of his loyalists to the rebel camp with the intention of defeating Kumaraswamy and strengthening the Congress. BJP sources say that people like MTB Nagaraj joining the rebel leaders came as a surprise.
BJP's Malleswaram MLA from Bengaluru, CN Ashwath Narayan, is the mastermind behind the entire operation, according to sources.
4. BJP high command
The Central leaders are huddled up in a meeting to discuss Karnataka politics to ensure Yeddyurappa sits on the CM's chair for the remaining term. An observer will be nominated and sent to Karnataka. Post this, Yeddyurappa will meet the Governor and form government. This may happen on Thursday along with the swearing-in ceremony, say BJP sources, adding that the floor test may take place on Friday.
Last Updated 5:31 PM IST