Seven Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) lawmakers in Karnataka on Saturday resigned from the party, a day after saying they voted for the Congress candidate in the Rajya Sabha polls, and will join the Congress on Sunday.
Legislators BZ Zaheer Ahmed Khan, R Akhanda Srinivas Murthy, N Chaluvaraya Swamy, Iqbal Ansari, HC Balakrishna, Ramesh Bandi Siddegowda and Bheema Naik have resigned from the party, JD-S state spokesman Ramesh Babu told IANS.
These legislators, who were earlier suspended by the JD-S for defying the party's whip and cross-voting for Congress during the 2016 Rajya Sabha polls, claimed to have voted in favour of third Congress candidate GC Chandrasekhar on Friday.
The seven legislators had also tendered their resignations to Assembly Speaker KB Koliwad.
"The four MLAs from JD-S have resigned of their own volition. Their resignations have been accepted," Koliwad told the media in Bengaluru.
The legislators said they will join Congress on Sunday in Mysuru in presence of party President Rahul Gandhi, who is currently on a two-day visit to the state.
"We will be joining the Congress on Sunday in presence of Gandhi and Chief Minister Siddaramaiah," Swamy, an MLA from Nagamangala assembly segment of Mandya district told reporters here.
Khan is a three-time MLA from Chamrajpet assembly constituency, Murthy represents Pulakeshinagar assembly segment in north-east Bengaluru and Ansari, the Gangavathi constituency in Koppal district.
Balakrishna, Bandisiddegowda and Naik are respectively the MLAs from Magadi constituency in Ramanagara district, Srirangapatna constituency in Mandya district and Hagaribommanahalli constituency in Ballari district.
The ruling Congress on Friday won three seats and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) one in the Rajya Sabha biennial election for four seats in Karnataka, said an election official.
L. Hanumanthaiah, Syed Naseer Hussain and GC Chandrasekhar of the Congress and Rajeev Chandrashekar of the BJP were declared elected by the Returning Officer. BM Farooq of the JD-S lost to GC Chandrasekhar of the Congress in the contest for the fourth seat.