Bengaluru: Amid the raging political crisis in Karnataka, all eyes are now on Assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar, to see if he accepts the resignations of rebel Congres-JD(S) MLAs.
On a day full of high drama that saw the Speaker approach the Supreme Court and 10 of the rebel MLAs re-submit their resignations to him, Ramesh Kumar addressed the media, saying he ‘loved Karnataka’ and would ‘not act in haste’.
“I felt hurt when I saw some news reports saying I was delaying the process. Governor informed me (of resignations) on July 6. I was in office till 1:30pm, when I left for personal work. Till then, no MLA had informed me they were coming to meet me. They came to my office at 2pm.”
Kumar said it was not his duty to ‘retain or let go of anyone’.
“On July 8, I scrutinised resignations based on rule 202, Karnataka Assembly Rules & Procedures. Eight of the letters weren’t in the prescribed format. For the rest too, I’m obliged to check if the resignations are voluntary and genuine. I need the whole night for that.”
Kumar said he had ‘videographed everything and would send it to the Supreme Court’.
“MLAs don’t communicate to me and rush to the Governor. What can he do? Is this not misuse? They approached the SC. My obligation is to the people of this state and Constitution of the country. I am delaying because I love this land. I am not acting in haste. The Supreme Court has asked me to take a decision. I have videographed everything and I will send it to the Supreme Court,” he added.
The Speaker said only three days had elapsed since the MLAs resigned, but they were behaving ‘like an earthquake had occurred’.
“They (rebel MLAs) told me that some people had threatened them and they went to Mumbai in fear. But I told them they should’ve approached me, and I would’ve given them protection. Only three working days have elapsed, but they are behaving like an earthquake has occurred,” said Kumar.
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court, hearing a plea of 10 of the rebel MLAs about their resignations not being accepted, had asked the Speaker to decide on the matter by midnight. Kumar contested this, saying he needed more time, and the SC allowed his application to be filed. It will now be heard along with the MLAs’ plea on July 12.
Also Watch: Karnataka Crisis: Supreme Court Orders Rebel MLAs To Appear Before The Speaker