‘Operation Lotus’: BJP’s bid to topple Karnataka government fails

BENGALURU: The Bharatiya Janata Party’s bid to topple Karnataka’s Congress- Janata Dal Secular coalition government by poaching its legislators has failed as rebel MLAs back out and not succumbed to the opposition party’s ‘Operation Kamala’ (lotus).

The scenario swiftly changed overnight when the Congress-JD(S) leaders managed to win back a majority of rebel lawmakers following fruitful talks.

Both Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy and Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwara claimed that the JD(S)-Congress coalition is safe and that they had the numbers.

The saffron party had shepherded 100-odd BJP MLAs remaining locked up in a luxury resort in Gurugram near the national capital besides shifting four Congress MLAs to Mumbai and other places.

State BJP president BS Yeddyurappa after realising that the resignation of required numbers of ruling alliance members not possible and that ‘Operation Kamala’ had been dropped.

“The party high command wanted no less than 16 Congress-JD(S) MLAs to resign, that too in one go. Till Saturday, around 12 Congress MLAs had assured us they would switch sides, but they backtracked. Hence we have dropped the operation,” Yeddyurappa is said to have told the MLAs, reported Times Of India.

The southern state’s ruling coalition partners JD-S-Congress and the opposition BJP have been trading charges of poaching each others’ legislators for the past few days.

This is BJP’s second failed attempt to destabilise to the seventh-month old coalition ministry and form government in Karnataka by indulging in spreading rumours of cracks.

In the 225-member Legislative Assembly, including one nominated member, the JDS-Congress have 118 member where the majority mark is 113 and the BJP 104.