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BJP Bares JD(S) Support, Elects Horatti as Karnataka LC Chairman

In the state’s political circles, the development has revealed what seems to be BJP’s covert alliance with JD(S).

Updated
Politics
2 min read
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On Tuesday, 9 February, the Janata Dal (Secular) MLC Basavaraj Horatti was elected chairman of Karnataka’s Legislative Council. In the state’s political circles, the development has revealed what seems to be the Bharatiya Janata Party’s covert alliance with the JD(S), which has been a Congress ally in the Legislative Assembly.

Horatti’s election to the chair has come as a result of a culmination of events, which unfolded in the joint session of the Karnataka Assembly that began on 29 January. On that day, the BJP’s MLC MK Prakash was unanimously elected as the deputy chairman of the Karnataka Council. The post was vacant after MLC Dharme Gowda’s alleged suicide in 2020.

It was speculated at the time that Prakash’s win would lead to the BJP supporting Horatti for the chairman’s post.

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Congress Stages Protest, Fields No Candidate

Congress, which has been alleging that the BJP has got to its ally, the JD(S), staged a protest in the well of the House right before the elections were held.

The party, however, did not field a candidate from its side for the post.

A source in Karnataka Congress told The Quint, “We have been saying that the BJP has taken over the JD(S). Now that the BJP did not field a candidate for the chairman’s post, it has become clear that they wanted Horatti to win.”

The leader did not answer why the Congress did not field its MLC candidate Naseer Ahmed for the post.

The Congress has been alleging the JD(S)-BJP link ever since the former covertly decided to support the BJP’s anti-cattle slaughter bill.

Karnataka’s Legislative Assembly had passed a bill on 10 December 2020 banning cow slaughter in the state. The bill titled Karnataka Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Bill 2020 was then opposed by both the Congress and the JD(S).

However, on 8 February, the bill was passed in the 75-member Legislative Council, where the JD(S) and the Congress have a majority. As the bill was passed by a voice vote after deputy chairman Pranesh tabled it, the Congress accused the JD(S) of having supported the legislation.

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