With the crisis in Karnataka set to mark its eighth day, the Congress Party lst evening has sent Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath to try and save the coalition government that has been teetering on the edge of collapse following the resignations of several ruling party MLAs from the state Assembly.
The Madhya Pradesh chief minister, who made an “unscheduled” visit to Delhi on Friday following a call from the top leadership, has been appointed “crisis manager” by the Congress high command to pacify the rebel MLAs and bail out the coalition government in Karnataka. He arrived in Bengaluru late on Saturday alongside senior leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on a day when five more rebel legislators moved the Supreme Court against the Speaker not accepting their resignation.
“He has been assigned the role of crisis manager to save the JD(S)- Congress coalition government in Karnataka from collapsing in the wake of resignation of some Congress MLAs”, sources close to Mr Nath told this newspaper, requesting not to be quoted.
The state Congress too went into an overdrive on Saturday, with Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah dispatching his top trouble-shooters — D.K. Shivakumar and state deputy chief minister Dr G. Parameshwar, who were later joined by chief minister H.D. Kumaraswamy — to step up efforts to pacify Hoskote MLA, M.T.B. Nagaraj and withdraw his resignation.
The onus is now on Shivakumar to convince two other disgruntled MLAs — Anand Singh and Muniratna Naidu — to drop their resignations, with Singh being the tougher call given his BJP antecedents. Apart from this, Siddarmaiah is in touch with S.T. Somashekar, Byrathi Basavarju and B.C. Patil.