Staked claim to form government but a floor test still looms for the renamed Yediyurappa
Will changing two letters in his name help the BJP's chief minister BS Yeddyurappa gain a simple majority in a hung assembly like in Karnataka after he moves the motion for the vote of confidence on July 29?
This is a question that the non-believers scoff at, but the believer in vaastu and astrology has suddenly changed the spelling of his name from Yeddyurappa to Yediyurappa. The two D's have been replaced with a D and an I.
The first time it came to light was when the Janata Dal Secular-Congress coalition government, headed by chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, was defeated on the floor of the assembly with 99 favouring his motion of vote of confidence and 105 saying a loud ‘No’ during the voice vote and backing it up by seeking a division.
Soon after the defeat of the Kumaraswamy government, Yeddyurappa wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah on a letterhead that carried the name of Yediyurappa. Partymen privately say that an astrologer felt that a change in his name would make him chief minister again.
The suggestion of this new astrologer was not any different than the earlier one who in 2008 suggested his name should be spelt as Yeddyurappa. Yeddyurappa brought the BJP to power for the first time in Karnataka and everyone believed that this was the gateway to the south of India.
Since then, it is believed by the believers, that the utility of that name appears to have dissipated and that was possibly the reason why he was not able to last more than three days as chief minister in May 2018 when his party won 105 seats in the assembly elections.
Strictly speaking, there is no change in the number of the BJP members in the assembly. What has changed is the number of rebel MLAs of the Congress and the Janata Dal Secular. Out of the 15 rebel MLAs, who went to the Supreme Court seeking a direction to the Speaker to accept their resignations, Speaker Ramesh Kumar has disqualified three.
And, like the SR or ‘slow release’ sign printed on anti-acidity tablets, the Speaker announced his intention to study each case of disqualification and get back to the media in a couple of days. So even if he disqualifies all the remaining rebel MLAs before Monday, the BJP would not be able to reach the magic figure of 112. That is the simple majority marker in a House of 222.
So from where is Yediyurappa going to get the additional six members since his party has the support of the lone Independent member in the House?
“Let us see. We have decided to form a government. Who knows from where we will get support,” said a BJP leader on condition of anonymity.
The Congress believes that the effort of the BJP is to get it through “horse trading.” One party leader, VS Ugrappa, even wondered aloud why Governor Vajubhai Vala did not reject the staking of the claim of Yediyurappa to form a government. “He knows that there are not more than 105 members with the BJP. Isn’t this going against the Constitution?” he asked.
The most plausible reasoning has come from analyst and Professor of Political science, Mysore University, Mussafar Assadi. “The assembly needs to pass the Finance bill (that will ensure payment of salaries to government employees apart from provide money to the government for purchases etc). The assembly will pass this and my hunch is that President's rule will be imposed and elections will be held in December.”