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Cong in K'tka suffers jolt as move to unseat Council chairman

Press Trust of India  |  Bengaluru 

Ruling today suffered amajor setback in the Legislative Council asa no-confidence motion it moved against the House Chairman was defeated by a united opposition by a single vote.

D H Shankaramuthy, a veteran, will continue to remain Chairman as the motion against him was defeated with JDS continuing to support him after rejecting overtures by the to join hands.

Two independent members also went with the

While the motion for removal of Shankaramurthy secured 36 votes in its favour, 37 were against it.

In the 75-member Council, the has 33 members, 23, JDS 13, besides 5 Independents and the Chairman. Currentlyone seat is vacant following the death of MLC VimalaGowda.

Deputy Chairman Maritibbe Gowda, who presided over theproceedings, declared that the "motion is rejected".

Earlier moving the motion, Ugrappa (Cong) accused Shankaramurthy of impropriety, nepotism, corruption and partisan behaviour.

He also alleged that as Chairman, Shankarmurthy worked against the rules and procedures of the House,the Constitution, and secular principles by openly showing his favoritism towards certain religious forces.

The Chair expunged some charges against Shankaramurthy, saying they were without any evidence.

Shankaramurthy termed Ugrappa's allegations as "blatant lies".

Stating that it was his privilege to work as Chairman of the Legislative Council, he claimed he has functioned in anon-partisan and responsible manner.

Pointing out that his tenure as the Chairman has been an "open book", Shankaramurthy told the members, "You have seen my work, vote according to your conscience."

Shankaramurthy on June 13 had allowed the notice for moving a no-confidence motion against him by Ugrappa and nine other MLCs.

Allowing the motion, he had said it makes no specific charges and it was not qualified or methodical but still he was allowing it in the spirit of democracy and with due respect to the House and its authority.

The House also witnessed chaotic scenes, overthe issue whether Ugrappa should be allowed to make chargesagainst Shankaramurthy while moving the motion, as it was not mentioned in the notice as per procedures.

After hearing the arguments made by both sides quotingrule book, the Chair decided that both will be allowed topresent their stand for five minutes.

Speaking to reporters after the trust vote, JDS state chiefH D Kumaraswamy clarified that his support for had nothingto do with the illegal mining case he was facing.

He said his party was only maintaining a status quo bysticking to an agreement with the according to which the national party will occupy Chairman's post,and his party Deputy Chairman's post.

Stating that KPCC President G Parameshwara had offeredhis party the chairman's post this morning ahead of the trust vote,he said the was indulging in "politicalopportunism".

Shankaramurthy on his part said all the allegationsmade against him were "totally baseless, irresponsible and irrelevant".

BJP's K S Eshwarappa, who is leader of opposition in the Council, called the no-confidence motion an attempt by to seize the chairman's post through "cunning politics."

He said JDS' support in this trust vote is a step towards creating Congress-free and the party high command will take "suitable decisions" in the days to come.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, June 15 2017. 18:13 IST