Congress troubleshooter DK Shivakumar was on Wednesday stopped from entering the premises of the Mumbai hotel where rebel Karnataka MLAs have been staying since Saturday after submitting their resignations. He was later detained by the Mumbai police -- following which Section 144 of the IPC was imposed around the area.
Karnataka Congress leader Shivakumar has long been known for his negotiation skills. He has primarily been responsible for forging the alliance between the Congress party and the Janata Dal (Secular) (JDS) in the state -- a partnership that now seems to be on a breaking point.
Shivakumar, quite understandably, took it upon himself to persuade the rebel MLAs to dictate, if not negotiate, terms.
To this end, on Wednesday, Shivakumar drove straight from the Mumbai airport to the above-mentioned hotel -- the Convention Centre Hotel -- to meet the rebel MLAs.
He was, however, not allowed to enter inside the hotel by the police due to security concerns.
This, according to a report in NDTV, did not stop him from gobbling up what the hotel provided for. Shivakumar was seen tucking in a plate of momos -- even as he remained adamant to speak with the MLAs.
But to his, and many others', surprise, the MLAs were adamant on their term of 'no discussion'.
Shivakumar, however, said he was ready to wait outside the hotel all day. "I'll not go without meeting my friends. They'll call me. Their heart will break. I'm in touch already, hearts of both of us are beating," he told NDTV, amid slogans of 'Shivakumar, go back'.j
Police, however, had different plans. Officials took Shivakumar in their custody. And a dejected Shivakumar was ferried by the police van.
Karnataka Minister DK Shivakumar who after being denied entry, was sitting outside Renaissance - Mumbai Convention Centre Hotel, detained by Mumbai Police.Section 144 had been imposed in the area. pic.twitter.com/dpHAObKkID— ANI (@ANI) July 10, 2019
The 13-month old Congress-JD(S) government plummetted into a crisis following the resignation of 11 MLAs last week.
The Karnataka Assembly has 225 members, including one nominated MLA. If the resignations are indeed accepted by Assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar, the ruling coalition's number in the 225-member House will drop from 118 to 101, 12 short of the majority mark.
To this end, the coalition is making all efforts to protect its government.
While the Congress party has been accusing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of conspiring to topple the coalition government in the state, Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy says the government will stay put come what may and the crisis will be resolved.