oppn parties Karnataka: Theatre Of The Absurd

News Snippets

  • Defence minister Rajnath Singh says India might revise its policy of "no first use" of nuclear weapons in national interest
  • Ravi Sashtri to remain head coach of Team India fro another two years
  • India defends move on Article 370, says entirely an internal matter
  • UN holds closed door meet on Kashmir but China fails in its attempt to censure India
  • Limited public transport service to be restored in J&K from this weekend
  • Educational institutions to reopen in phases from Monday in J&K
  • Government decides to restore telecommunications in phases in J&K starting with landline phones this weekend
  • PM Modi announces that India will have a Chief of Defence Staff soon
  • PM Modi says government worried about population explosion, will introduce schemes to control it
  • Prime Minister Modi explains the decision to read down Article 370 in his address to the nation on the occasion of Independence Day
  • All 6 accused in Pehlu Khan lynching case acquitted
  • Cricketers will now be tested for dope as BCCI decides to come under NADA after a prod from the government
  • NDTV promoters Prannoy and Radhika Roy prevented from travelling abroad. Channel says it amounts to subversion of media freedom
  • TMC spokesman Derek O'Brien questioned for two hours by the CBI on the party mouthpiece 'Jago Bangla'
  • Former finance minister Arun Jaitley has been admitted to AIIMS for breathing problems. His condition is said to be stable
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oppn parties
Karnataka: Theatre Of The Absurd

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.

A theatre of the absurd is being played out in the Karnataka assembly for the last two days. The Congress, the BJP, the state Governor Vajubhai Vala and the assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar are all guilty of defaming democracy in full view of the whole world. To further confound the situation, the Supreme Court is being approached by both the political parties and the rebel MLAs on points of law. The matter has reached such a pass that it would not be improper to say that it seems none of the present laws in India are adequate enough to prevent politicians from making a spectacle of themselves.

What started as a resignation spree from Congress and JD(S) MLAs (helped, without doubt, by enticement from the BJP) who wanted to desert a sinking ship, has now descended into a battle for survival for the Congress-JD(U) alliance (helped, in turn, by a visibly partisan Speaker). The Governor has thrown his hat in the ring by writing letters fixing deadlines to hold the trust vote which has been ignored by the Speaker as the Governor does not have the power to direct the Speaker. He can at best send a report to the home ministry on the goings-on.

Despite knowing that they do not have the numbers, the alliance is perhaps banking upon the idea that some of the rebel MLAs will get frustrated by the delay and switch sides once more or that it will get some kind of relief from the Supreme Court. But it seems that the time has run out for the alliance. None of the rebels have indicated that they will change their minds. The Supreme Court is not likely to involve itself in matters of the assembly or the trust vote. Come Monday and the alliance will lose the vote, but not before having shown the world that those who are picked by the people to make laws twist the same laws disgustingly.

The current fiasco shows that it is time now to revisit the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution and various other laws pertaining to legislative assemblies and the powers of both the Governor and the Speaker. If the present laws were clear cut, the current spectacle would not have played out. Hence, the need is to insert rules for clearly specifying what the Speaker needs to do once an MLA submits his resignation, the time frame within which he must decide on the issue, the time frame within which a motion for trust must be put to vote and several other issues that have come up.