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Yeddyurappa arrives with MLAs, to meet President today

J. Balaji

NEW DELHI: Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa arrived here on Monday night with the Bharatiya Janata Party MLAs from his Assembly, besides party MPs and MLCs, to meet President Pratibha Patil on Tuesday and prove his majority.

Mr. Yeddyurappa will also to seek the removal of Governor H.R. Bhardwaj who reportedly recommended the dismissal of the BJP government in the State.

The MLAs — including 11 Independents whose Assembly membership has been restored after the Supreme Court quashed their disqualification by Karnataka Assembly Speaker K.G. Bopaiah — accompanied the Chief Minister on three chartered flights from Bangalore.

The MLAs extended their “unqualified support to the government of Mr. Yeddyurappa” and claimed that they continued to be MLAs of the BJP.

Late in the night, Mr. Yeddyurappa had detailed discussions with BJP president Nitin Gadkari and senior party leaders Arun Jaitley and Dharmendra Pradhan here.

“Mr. Bhardwaj has been trying to destabilise our government right from the beginning. We request the President and the Prime Minister to save Karnataka and the democracy by recalling the Governor,” Mr. Yeddyurappa told journalists after his arrival here.

He added that the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) in Karnataka wanted to remove the BJP government “illegally” and that the BJP would thwart their attempts.

Recall Governor

Meanwhile, Bihar Deputy Chief Minister and senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi also demanded the recall of Mr. Bhardwaj.

“The Governor's recommendation for imposition of President's rule in Karnataka is an attempt to murder democracy... the Centre should immediately recall him as he has acted beyond the spirit of democratic and constitutional prestige, norms and settled legislative decisions,” Mr. Modi said in a statement.

Claiming that the BJP was in full majority in Karnataka, Mr. Modi said the Yeddyurappa government should be given a chance to prove its majority in the Assembly.

Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy asked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to “stop this debasement of the Constitution” by Mr. Bhardwaj, who seemed to be “hell bent to get rid of the Yeddyurappa government by hook or crook.”

“The Congress party dare not precipitate an election in Karnataka which Mr. Yeddyurappa will win by a thumping two-thirds majority of Assembly seats,” Mr. Swamy said.

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