After serving notices, 14 MLAs to be kept waiting inordinately

Contrary to expectations that the Bharatiya Janata Party would initiate tough legal action against 14 of its MLAs, who violated party discipline by attending the Haveri rally of the former Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa, the party will handle the situation “politically” so that its government survives.

“It does not mean that we will not initiate legal action at all. But, whatever legal action we will be initiating will be to mainly support our political strategy rather than merely suspending, disqualifying or expelling the MLAs leading to the immediate dissolution of the Assembly,” sources in the party said.

This would mean that the party would serve notices to the 14 MLAs after its core committee meeting on Wednesday asking why disciplinary action should not be taken against them. Legally, it is essential to follow the principles of natural justice by providing an opportunity for the legislators to explain their position.

But the party may not go beyond this, and keep the 14 MLAs waiting for the final action as part of its bigger political game plan.

Meanwhile, the party will try to instigate Mr. Yeddyurappa to topple the government. “The main plank of Mr. Yeddyurappa is the Lingayat community and support from MLAs of the northern region. If he topples this government headed by a Lingayat from north Karnataka, we will launch a counter campaign against him on how he has betrayed his own electoral constituency,” party sources said.

But if he desists from toppling the government, he may have to put up with the insult to his supporters in the government, including the Ministers.

Ministers to go?

According to sources, the party is also considering axing one or two Ministers close to Mr. Yeddyurappa some time later.

“The advantage for us is that the Opposition parties have already made it clear that they are not going to move a no-confidence motion. We will keep on challenging Mr. Yeddyurappa to topple the government,” sources said. Party leaders have also decided to undertake visits to the constituencies of these 14 MLAs where they have already identified alternative candidates to contest the forthcoming Assembly polls. “Our main aim is to defeat these MLAs even if we cannot win. We will try to politically put them down in their own constituencies and promote the alternative candidates through various methods, including sanctioning the development works suggested by them.”

The party is learnt to have identified alternative candidates not just for the 14 MLAs, who attended the rally, but also for all the prominent members of the Yeddyurappa camp, including Ministers Shobha Karandlaje and Basavaraj Bommai. “Now we will do everything to promote the alternative candidates,” sources said.

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