'No MLA Has Sought My Protection', Says Karnataka Speaker After Congress Demands Safety for Lawmakers
Bengaluru: Karnataka Assembly speaker KR Ramesh Kumar Friday said no MLA has sought protection from him amid allegations by the Congress that rebel lawmakers were being held captive to bring down the government.
The statement by the speaker in the assembly came after senior Congress leader H K Patil requested him to create an atmosphere conducive for the legislators who are holed up outside the city to attend the session.
"No one has come seeking protection... nor have their families come.. so the issue ends there," Kumar said. Senior Congress leader D K Shivakumar said he had been to Mumbai where the rebel MLAs are sequestered and according to his information, they were in "captivity and confinement".
The House, which missed the Governor's 1.30 pm deadline for the voting on the confidence motion, was also locked in a debate on when the trust vote process should be completed. "Lot of discussion has happened; I want to close it (trust motion process) today," the speaker said.
He also said, "Caesar's wife should be above suspicion; I cannot be guilty of dragging proceedings." Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy said "I have made preliminary submission; we can conclude (the process) on Monday."
BJP leader Suresh Kumar said sanctity of trust vote would be lost if dragged on and insisted the process be completed Friday itself. The speaker said he would give the ruling a little later.
After the 1.30 pm deadline set by him Thursday was missed, state Governor Vajubhai Vala has asked Kumaraswamy to complete the process by Friday itself.