Karnataka turmoil: two trust votes in 10 days

We rebelled to protect our self-respect, say 12 MLAs

Rebel legislators reiterate they will not retract

Twelve rebel MLAs holed up in a Mumbai resort on Sunday claimed they were forced to rebel to protect their “self-respect” and that they were not after either money or power.

Releasing a video message on the eve of the vote on trust motion moved by the Chief Minister, the rebel MLAs reiterated that they would not retract and there was no question of them attending the Assembly session.

At least three MLAs — Byrathi Basavaraj, K. Gopalaiah and B.C. Patil — said they were hurt in the coalition government as their self-respect was at stake, forcing them to rebel. A.H. Vishwanath said they had sacrificed their posts as MLAs to correct the course of politics in the larger interests of the State. “There is demonic politics in the State since the coalition government came to power. There is no rajadharma. So we have taken a moral and ideological stand to teach them a lesson,” he said. A common theme in the video message was that most of the MLAs in Mumbai were rich themselves and had no need to take money from anyone else. Multiple MLAs claimed they were not for money or power.

S.T. Somashekar, who has emerged as a spokesperson for the rebel MLAs since they have been camping in Mumbai, said they were all united in their decision to resign and not participating in the session and that there was no question of retracting. Responding to allegations by coalition leaders that they were held at “gunpoint”, he said they were in Mumbai on their own free will and none forced them to be there.

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Printable version | Feb 23, 2020 8:18:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/we-rebelled-to-protect-our-self-respect-say-12-mlas/article28629173.ece

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