New Delhi, May 23: Notwithstanding Centre rejecting H R Bhardwaj's recommendation on imposing President's rule in Karnataka, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today said he would continue to demand the recall of the Governor, who "acted in a partisan manner".
"I compliment the Government of India for taking the decision not to accept the Karnataka Governor's recommendation to keep the Assembly in suspended animation. It is a great victory for democracy and for my government which enjoys a clear majority," Yeddyurappa told reporters here.
After the Centre rejected his recommendation last night, Bhardwaj gave his consent to the Cabinet's recommendation to convene the Assembly session from June 2.
However, this did not placate Yeddyurappa and the BJP and the party has decided not to give up its demand for the Governor's recall.
"This was nothing but a political conspiracy of the Congress party. This is an attack on the federal structure of the country and recommendations of the Sarkaria Commission on Centre-state relationships," Yeddyurappa said.
Sources close to the chief minister maintained that he will return to the capital after a week and meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Home Minister P Chidambaram to press for Bhardwaj's removal. Singh left for a week-long visit to Ethiopia and Tanzania this morning.
"The Centre's decision clearly exhibits that the Governor has acted hastily and in a partisan manner. It is high time that the Centre recall the Governor immediately," Yeddyurappa said.
Yeddyurappa insisted that the Governor did not pay heed to the Karnataka Cabinet resolution for convening of the session soon after the Supreme Court quashed the Speaker's decision disqualifying 11 rebel BJP MLAs.
Bhardwaj rejected the government's offer of a floor test and instead sent a report to the Centre recommending President's Rule.
"The Cabinet had passed a resolution on May 16 to convene the session. A delegation of ministers had met the Governor on May 16 and requested for his consent. It is now obvious that the union government has rejected the Governor's action," he said.
Asked about UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi's comments yesterday that some opposition parties were not acting against their corrupt chief ministers, Yeddyurappa said, "The entire country knows very well what is happening at the Centre. I will reply to it at the appropriate time."
The Chief Minister met senior party leaders L K Advani, Nitin Gadkari, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley here. He thanked the NDA Chief ministers who had written letters to the Centre against the Karnataka Governor's behaviour.
He also thanked Singh, Chidambaram and Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee for "this appropriate decision to uphold the true democratic decision".
Yeddyurappa also had a message for the opposition MLAs who have been targeting him.
"I sincerely hope the opposition will realise the folly atleast now and extend constructive cooperation to the government," he said.
Meanwhile, sources said the government will not go for a floor test in the Assembly when it meets on June 2 as it had paraded 114 party MLAs and shown letters of support of seven more to President Pratibha Patil.
Asked if the 11 rebel MLAs who are now back in the BJP camp will be accommodated through a cabinet expansion, sources close to the Chief Minister said it would take place only after the 15-day session gets over.
In Bangalore, BJP leaders burst crackers, distributed sweets, raised slogans against the Governor and reiterated the party's demand for his immediate recall.
The celebrations at the state unit BJP office was led by Home Minister R Ashoka, where partymen assembled and burst crackers and distributed sweets and raised anti-Governor slogans.
State unit BJP spokesman S Prakash said Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa, who is returning from New Delhi this evening, would be accorded a rousing reception from the Bengaluru International Airport and taken in a procession.
Celebrations are on in all assembly constituencies in the city and also in various parts of the state, he said.
The scenes of jubilation began last night soon after the Centre announced its decision not to invoke article 356 of the Constitution as recommended by the Governor on May 15. BJP activists gathered at the official residence of Yeddyurappa and burst crackers.
Meanwhile the BJP suspended protest rallies it had planned in various districts to protest against the Governor's report.
As had been decided by the party earlier, Yeddyurappa was scheduled to lead a rally in Tumkur and the state unit party president K S Eswarappa in Koppal.
The BJP leaders also exuded confidence of returning to power after the next Assembly elections, saying "after two years, we will return to power with people's support."
Manjunath demanded that the Governor, Congress and JD-S leaders apologise to the people of Karnataka for 'using' the office of Governor for their political ends. PTI