BJP, JD(S) MLAs to meet President

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H.D. Kumaraswamy
H.D. Kumaraswamy

Special Correspondent

Kumaraswamy affirms “unconditional” support

BANGALORE: All the 129 legislators from the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Janata Dal(Secular) from Karnataka will present themselves before President Pratibha Patil in a day or two. A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the JD(S) and BJP leaders here on Sunday night. This comes in the wake of the perceived delay by Governor Rameshwar Thakur in inviting BJP leader B.S. Yeddyurappa to form a government despite the two parties presenting their legislators before him and furnishing letters of support.

BJP leaders met the Governor again late in the night. Sources in the party said they had furnished a copy of the letter of “unconditional support” already submitted by the Janata Dal (S) to the Governor in October.

BJP State president D.V. Sadananda Gowda, however, maintained that the issue of “unconditional support” never figured as the JD(S) had already submitted the letter. He told The Hindu that the party leaders had met the Governor for the second time to bring to his notice that they had ended their two-day-old indefinite dharna in the evening following his advice. They had requested him to send his report to the Centre well before the planned meeting with the President.

He said the coalition was trying to get an appointment with the President either on November 6 or 7.

A 12-point list of conditions imposed on the BJP by the JD(S) national president, H.D. Deve Gowda, had threatened to become a stumbling block in the process of government formation. The Governor reportedly told a five-member BJP delegation on Sunday afternoon that the party must get a letter from its coalition partner offering “unconditional” support to a BJP-led government.

A senior BJP functionary said the Governor spoke at length on the fresh conditions. His view was that the stability of the coalition government might be affected if it had only “conditional” support from its allies. The delegation immediately drew the Governor’s attention to the statement of the former Chief Minister, H.D. Kumaraswamy, at a press conference earlier in the day affirming his party’s “unconditional” support. The Governor, however, preferred a fresh letter, the source said.

A meeting was convened between the coalition leaders and the BJP requested the JD(S) for a fresh letter. Mr. Kumaraswamy reportedly refused, arguing that the original letter was enough.

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