Horatti resigns as Council Chairman and MLC

Basavaraj Horatti

Basavaraj Horatti

Bringing an end to his decades-long association with the Janata Parivar, Chairman of the Karnataka Legislative Council Basavaraj Horatti on Monday tendered resignation to the post as well to his membership from the Council.

Setting to rest speculations, he is set to join the BJP on Tuesday and contest in the Karnataka West Teachers’ constituency from where he has won for a record seven times.

The term of Mr. Horatti, who was elected on Janata Dal (Secular) ticket, would have otherwise come to an end on July 4. The Election Commission of India has already notified elections to four teachers’ and graduates’ constituency, including the West Teachers, to be held on June 13.

In the absence of a Deputy Chairman in the Council (yet to be elected), he submitted an one-line resignation letter to Council Secretary K.R. Mahalakshmi on Monday after addressing the media. While the Governor has to accept his resignation that will be routed through the Law Department, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai will have to propose to the Governor a member from the Council for appointment as pro-tem Chairman since the post of Legislative Council Chairman is a constitutional one that cannot be left vacant. Mr. Horatti also clarified that though he had addressed his resignation letter to the Deputy Chairman as per protocol, he handed over the letter to the Secretary since the post is lying vacant.

“The decision to join the BJP was an accidental choice and I was under pressure from teachers and well-wishers to contest from this party. Sometimes such decisions also become inevitable,” Mr. Horatti said, defending his decision to leave the JD(S). Though the BJP is expected to nominate him as the party’s choice for the post of Chairman if he gets elected, Mr. Horatti denied joining the BJP on that condition. He also clarified that his decision to shift parties was not to enable his children to enter politics.

Under criticism from the Congress that he allegedly brought disrespect to the Constitutional post by meeting Union Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah to discuss his political future, he said that was a brief meeting where other government functionaries including Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai was also present. Mr. Horatti, however, parried away several questions on his comfort level and acceptance of BJP ideology after having spent his political life in socialist ideology.

When asked if his decision to quit the JD(S) was linked to the party denying him a Cabinet berth during the JD(S)-Congress coalition, he said: “I did not express disappointment when I did not get Cabinet berth. I also understood the coalition pressures.” While thanking JD(S) supremo H.D. Deve Gowda for his guidance and for making him a Minister in the JD(S)-BJP coalition government earlier, the veteran leader, whose seven-time victory stands as a national record, said: “I do not have the strength to meet him. He has always treated me as a family member. So I have sent a detailed 10 to 12 page note to Mr. Gowda. He is the most matured politician. I have also spoken to (former Chief Minister) H.D. Kumaraswamy and he had also come home.”

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Printable version | Jun 19, 2022 6:50:33 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/horatti-resigns-as-council-chairman-and-mlc/article65419864.ece