Bengaluru, Jul 21: Ruling Congress-JDS Coalition party leaders received a severe blow as 13 rebel Legislators, staying in a Hotel in Mumbai since last two weeks, today announced that they will not participate in the Karnataka Legislative Assembly Session tomorrow when Motion on Confidence sought by Chief minister H D Kumaraswamy will be put to voice vote on Monday.
In a video released from Mumbai to the media here on Sunday, the dissident MLAs said they will not come to the Assembly on July 22. They said, one by one, that their self respect was at the risk and they were not lured by any monitory or other considerations from any quarters. "We are all staying here on our own and to teach a lesson to the senior leaders of both the parties who were ignoring the interests of people of our respective constituencies".
The 13 sitting legislators include 10 from the Congress party and 3 from Janata Dal (S). One of the rebels, MLA S T Somasekhar, said that "we celebrated the birthday of M T B Nagaraj and Narayana Gowda, who are with us today in Mumbai, and we are not staying here at gun point as alleged by a minister of Karnataka Assembly, earlier".
Former Minister and Ex-JDS State President A H Vishwanath, who is also staying along with others in the hotel, alleged that "Coalition Government is not functioning as per principles of democracy. Democratic norms were ignored by both the coalition partner leaders. There are many things to be exposed. We all are united and will return once the crisis is over and hold a press conference jointly to expose all the leaders who are functioning against democratic norms."
Underlining that the rebel MLAs will not attend the Session tomorrow, Vishwanath said that he had written a letter to the Speaker about moving a privilege motion against Minister Sa Ra Mahesh who alleged that "I have been sold for Rs 28 Crore to BJP'. I am also filing a defamation case against him and demand Rs 1 Crore as compensation.
Those who spoke in the video alleged that it was Congress senior leaders who were forcing us to remain calm till Lok Sabha elections are completede and later should not allow the JDS to continue as coalition partner. "Despite Congress sufferring a severe setback in the Lok Sabha election by winning only one seat of the total 28, our leaders have not learnt a lesson and continuing to be coalition partners in a government which has failed to deliver since it came to power and JDS Ministers and MLAs are ignoring us and development works in our respective constituency are not taken up and people are suffering."
The rebel members appealed to the Voters to excuse them since they had to take the step to teach a lesson to the senior leaders to protect the interests of the State and people. (UNI)