Newly sworn in Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today said he was "100 per cent sure" of winning the vote of confidence in the assembly and completing the five-year term. He slammed the Congress-JDS alliance as "unholy" and charged they were out to grab power though the people had "rejected them outright".
Meanwhile, Congress leaders today staged a protest in front of the Gandhi statue next to the Vidhana Soudha, the state secretariat, against the swearing in of B S Yeddyurappa as chief minister. Several senior Congress leaders, including former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ashok Gehlot, Mallikarjuna Kharge, party's General Secretary in-charge of Karnataka K C Venugopal, sat at the foot of the statue, staging the protest.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi criticised the Governor's decision of inviting the BJP to form a government in Karnataka, and termed it as 'murder of democracy'. He alleged that RSS is making way into all Indian institutions, and that such things happen only in Pakistan or monopoly.
Also Read: BJP Govt in Karnataka: War of words between Congress, BJP after Yeddyurappa takes oath as CM
In a rare post-midnight courtroom battle, the Congress-JD(S) combine made a desperate legal push to stall the government formation. A bench of Justices A K Sikri, S A Bobde and Ashok Bhushan was specially convened at "odd hours" to hear the petition by Congress-JD(S) combine which challenges the Governor Vajubhai Vala's communication to Yeddyurappa to be sworn in as CM.
Hours before the swearing-in ceremony, the apex court made it clear that the swearing-in and the government formation would be subject to the final outcome of the case before it. The top court’s observation, thus, paved way for Yeddyurappa to take oath as Karnataka’s new chief minister at 09:30 am today.
As it happened:
09:45 pm: Police security withdrawn around Eagleton Resort where Congress MLAs are staying
08:30 pm: BJP people are doing horse-trading. This is unethical and against the principles of democracy. No MLA will yield to their demand: Siddaramaiah
08:20 pm: Karnataka Governor appoints Prabhuling K Navadgi as the Advocate General of Karnataka in place of Madhusudan R Naik, who has resigned from the post
08:15 pm: JD(S) leader and former PM HD Deve Gowda talks to Congress President Rahul Gandhi over phone on the current political situation in Karnataka
08:00 pm: Like IPL, Karnataka MLAs will not be auctioned under 'Indian Political League', says Yashwant Sinha
07: 20 pm: Karnataka Governor "sacrificed " the Constitution and democracy for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, says Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala
07:13 pm: Whatever the BJP has done in Karnataka is in accordance with rule book, Congress has no faith in its MLAs, says Union minister Prakash Javdekar
Whatever BJP's done in #Karnataka is in accordance with rule book. Congress is ill informed & as a result is making these funny claims. They don't have faith on their MLAs as they have held them captive in a resort. JDS & Congress are scared after being exposed: Prakash Javadekar pic.twitter.com/r683Xuv0EH— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
07:17 pm: Union minister Ram Vilas Paswam defends Karnataka Governor's decision to invite Yeddyurappa for government formation, says Cong-JD(S) did not have pre-poll alliance
07:00 pm: West Bengal CM Mamata Bannerjee supports Mayawati against BJP forming govt in Karnataka.
06:15 pm: Newly-appointed Karnataka CM transfers 4 senior IPS officers including Sandeep Patil, DIG(Police) and Amar Kumar Pandey, ADGP (Railways, Bengaluru).
06:10 pm: Congress to observe 'Save Democracy Day' by staging nationwide protests on May 18 against the swearing-in of Yeddyurappa as Karnataka CM.
04:12 pm: Karnataka case did not deserve pre-dawn hearing, says former AG Mukul Rohatgi
04:05 pm: Three Congress legislators come out of resort by now. Congress MLA Rajshekhar comes out of the resort claiming he's unwell.
03:00 pm: Congress seeks recall of Karnataka Governor over Yedyurappa's swearing-in as CM
Democracy has been brazenly manipulated, mutilated and massacred in Karnataka. It does not augur well for the future of India. All eyes are now on the Supreme Court to come out in protection of the Constitutional ethos on which the very foundation of our nation rests.— Capt.Amarinder Singh (@capt_amarinder) May 17, 2018
02:47 pm: The Governor is going against the Constitution.The role of Governor is being dictated by the govt. He was a RSS member and a Cabinet Minister under Modi Saheb in Gujarat. It is obvious that he will listen to the Centre: Capt. Amarinder Singh, Punjab CM
01:58 pm: We saw how PM Narendra Modi misused the office of Governor in Tamil Nadu. The same has been done in Karnataka. This is totally against democracy: DMK leader M K Stalin
01:48 pm: BJP will continue to remain in power for the next 50 years. We will win 2019 Lok Sabha elections with a bigger majority than 2014, says Amit Shah.
01:47 pm: BJP workers will reach out to over 22 crore families before the 2019 General elections, says Amit Shah
12:55 pm: It is a short lived government, we are confident because we have the majority. We will fight for justice. 100% all our MLAs are with us: DK Shivakumar,Congress
12:34 pm: Independent MLAs are in touch with us, we will prove majority on floor: BJP's Sriramulu
12:19 pm: Congress-JD(S) combine trying to grab power through 'immoral' post-poll alliance. I am sure of winning vote of confidence. My government will complete 5 years: CM Yeddyurappa
12:11 pm: Wait till tomorrow or day after tomorrow: BS Yeddyurappa on floor test
12:10 pm: Today constitution is being attacked. In Karnataka on one side there are MLAs standing and on the other side the Governor. JDS has said its MLAs have been offered Rs 100 crore each: Rahul Gandhi
RSS is making way into all institutions in the country. Aisa Pakistan ya tanashahi mein hota hai: Congress President Rahul Gandhi in Chhattisgarh's Raipur pic.twitter.com/SJx51LSlwi— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
11:42 am: A Supreme Court bench headed by CJI Dipak Misra asks Ram Jethmalani to mention his plea tomorrow before the bench concerned, reports PTI
11:41 am: Yeddyurappa likely to hold press conference in Vidhan Sabha
Watch Video: Rahul Gandhi says RSS making way into all institutions
11:32 am: BJP MPs are afraid of PM Modi, murder of democracy is going on under Modi government: Rahul Gandhi
11:21 am: Two Independent MLAs join Congress-JDS protests against Yeddyurappa's swearing-in as CM
11:20 am: HD Deve Gowda and Kumaraswamy join protests outside Karnataka Assembly
A farcical Oath of CM’s post,— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) May 17, 2018
A fraud being played on majority,
A treachery with Constitution,
A deception with democracy,
That is Gov Karnataka illegally swearing in #BSYeddyurappa-turning the Raj Bhavan into BJP Office.
This Black Spot on India’s democracy will be erased.
11:13 am: Senior lawyer Ram Jethmalani moves SC in his personal capacity against the decision of the Karnataka Governor inviting BJP to form govt
11:10 am: Yeddyurappa holds cabinet meeting after swearing-in; announces Rs 1 lakh farm loan waiver
Modi govt is misusing institutions of central govt. I know they are threatening MLAs. Anand Singh (Cong MLA) told 'they are using ED, I had a case in ED & they are going to screw me. I'm sorry I have to protect my interest,' another Cong MLA who spoke to Singh told me-Kumaraswamy pic.twitter.com/QrzW8eHeAR— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
11:00 am: BS Yeddyurappa has become Karnataka CM third time. I have confidence that he will provide a stable and responsible govt. It is unfortunate that Congress being an old age party is indulging in nefarious activities, they should work as a constructive opposition party: Ananth Kumar, BJP
10:52 am: Our plan is to safeguard MLAs. BJP & their ministers are working to purchase MLAs, people should know about attitude of central govt. BJP does not have majority, how has the Governor behaved? He has misused his office: HD Kumarasway on Yeddyurappa being sworn in as CM
I will request my father (HD Deve Gowda) to take the lead & talk to all regional parties & see how BJP is destroying democratic systems, we have to come together to protect interests of the country: JD(S)'s HD Kumaraswamy #Karnataka pic.twitter.com/KpzWZUlPHr— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
10:43 am: Amit Shah hits back at Rahul Gandhi. Here's what he said:
"The ‘Murder of Democracy’ happens the minute a desperate Congress made an ‘opportunist’ offer to the JD(S), not for Karnataka’s welfare but for their petty political gains. Shameful!"
"Who has the people’s mandate in Karnataka? The BJP, which has won 104 seats Or Congress which dropped to 78 seats, whose own CM and Ministers lost by big margins. JD(S) who won only 37 seats and lost their deposits on several others. People are wise to realise."
"President of the Congress obviously doesn’t remember the glorious history of his party. The legacy of Mr. Rahul Gandhi’s Party is the horrific Emergency, blatant misuse of Article 356, subverting the courts, media and civil society."
10:42 am: There was no urgency according to me. There was no need for the matter to be listed at night. SC has the power to undo if any wrong is done. Last night we didn't have all the papers, except the petition: Mukul Rohatgi on Supreme Court overnight bench on #Karnataka situation
10:32 am: Yeddyurappa reaches Karnataka Assembly to assume office as chief minister.
All MLAs are in contact, the two MLAs who are not present here right now will come, I also just came back from Mangaluru: Congress MLA Khader, outside Eagleton resort near Bengaluru pic.twitter.com/YshxJL6tX0— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
10:19 am: Congress MLA Anand Singh is not present in the protest, and is likely to be in Delhi. Reportedly, he also not even signed the support letter of the Congress-JD(S) combine. The development holds importance amid reports of discontent among Congress ranks over Kumaraswamy being offered CM post.
Bengaluru: HD Deve Gowda leaves from his residence for Shangri-La Hotel, where JD(S) MLAs are lodged. pic.twitter.com/p2MBxISFod— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
10:12 am: Governor has given Yeddyurappa 15 days to prove his majority on the floor of the house. Analysts believe that BJP will use this period to convince legislators of Congress and JD(S) to abstain from voting.
#UpdateVisuals from Bengaluru: Congress holds protest at Mahatma Gandhi's statue in Vidhan Soudha, against BS Yeddyurappa's swearing in as CM of #Karnataka. GN Azad, Ashok Gehlot, Mallikarjun Kharge, KC Venugopal and Siddaramaiah present. pic.twitter.com/asDWeGJTpD— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa along with BJP leaders Ananth Kumar and Murlidhar Rao pic.twitter.com/7JlJG9zsCL— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
Watch Video: Congress MLAs protest outside Karnataka Assembly against Yeddyurappa's swearing-in as CM
Bengaluru: Congress holds protest at Mahatma Gandhi's statue in Vidhan Soudha, against BS Yeddyurappa's swearing in as CM of #Karnataka. GN Azad, Ashok Gehlot, Mallikarjun Kharge, KC Venugopal and Siddaramaiah present. pic.twitter.com/16BYIQfJ9D— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
Bengaluru: Congress MLAs and leaders, including GN Azad, Ashok Gehlot and Siddaramaiah, gather at Mahatma Gandhi's statue in Vidhan Soudha to protest against BS Yeddyurappa's swearing in as CM of Karnataka. pic.twitter.com/lmWcrFUr30— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
09:33 am: Congress and JD(S) MLAs hold protest against Yeddyurappa's swearing-in as CM.
09:29 am: The matter is pending before the Court. We will go to the people and we will tell them how BJP is going against the Constitution: Siddaramaiah in Bengaluru
09:25 am: If Congress wants to protest, they should protest against Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi & Siddaramaiah, as this trio has ruined the Congress: Union Minister Ananth Kumar in Bengaluru
Bengaluru: Congress and JD(S) MLAs leave from Eagleton Resort, to hold protest outside Vidhana Soudha (Karnataka Assembly) pic.twitter.com/MI15CPdiNQ— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
09:16 am: Congress MLAs leave from Bengaluru resort for Raj Bhavan, to protest against Yeddyurappa's oath as CM
09:07 am: Rahul Gandhi terms Yedyyurappa's swearing-in as 'defeat of democracy'. Here is what he tweeted:
"The BJP’s irrational insistence that it will form a Govt. in Karnataka, even though it clearly doesn’t have the numbers, is to make a mockery of our Constitution.
This morning, while the BJP celebrates its hollow victory, India will mourn the defeat of democracy."
09:03 am: Yeddyurappa takes oath as karnataka CM.
08:50 am: Yeddyurappa reaches Raj Bhavan, to take oath as Karnataka CM for second time.
08:49 am: I think all the precedents are with the Governor's decision. We will get the support, we will prove our majority on the floor of the House: Ananth Kumar, BJP
#WATCH BJP workers chant slogans of 'Vande Mataram and Modi, Modi' outside Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru, as oath taking ceremony of BS Yeddyurappa as Karnataka CM to is set to begin shortly pic.twitter.com/npZthZbqZd— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
Bengaluru: BS Yeddyurappa leaves for Raj Bhavan, to take oath as Karnataka Chief Minister shortly. pic.twitter.com/gfX5kXi698— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
Bengaluru: Swearing-in ceremony of BS Yeddyurappa as the Chief Minister of Karnataka to begin shortly; Union Ministers JP Nadda, Dharmendra Pradhan and Prakash Javadekar present at Raj Bhavan #Karnataka pic.twitter.com/yV3BEj8wNL— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2018
06:37 am: The court's decision comes as a boost to BJP as after Yeddyurappa's swearing-in ceremony, the party will definitely get a chance to prove majority on floor.
06:10 am: SC asks Yeddyurappa to produce letter he had given to Karnataka governor claiming support of MLAs, hearing to continue at 10:30 am on Friday
06:00 am: They have asked the government to produce that letter of 15th May, which Yeddyurappa had given to the Governor (Karnataka), at 10:30 am tomorrow: Counsel for petitioners Congress and JD(S)
05:55 am: Mukul Rohatgi says how long Yeddyurappa will be given to prove majority can be debated after two days
05:50 am: Supreme Court did not dismiss the petition filed by Congress and JD(S), said, "this petition is a subject of hearing later on". SC also issued a notice to respondents including BJP's BS Yeddyurappa, asking to file a reply
05:50 am: It's unheard that a party is given 15 days time to prove its majority from 104 to the magical number(112). Giving permission to form the govt to someone who is having 104 seats as compared to the other group that is having 116, is adding insult to injury: Abhishek Manu Singhvi
The top court heard a joint petition by the Congress and JD-S challenging Governor Vajubhai Vala's decision inviting Yeddyurappa to form a new government in the state despite having 104 MLAs -- eight short of simple majority.
The petition was filed late on Wednesday night after Governor Vala invited Yeddyurappa for an oath taking ceremony on Thursday at 9 a.m. and gave him days to prove his majority in the legislative assembly.
The Congress and the JD-S, who formed a hurriedly stitched post-poll alliance after a hung assembly verdict to claim a majority of 116 members in the new assembly, called the Governor's decision "unconstitutional".
"The BJP has only 104 MLAs, the Governor invited Yeddyurappa to form government in an unconstitutional manner," senior counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who appeared for the Congress, told the three-member bench of Justices A.K. Sikri, S.A. Bobde and Ashok Bhushan.