In the afternoon, two buses belonging to Sharma travels arrived at the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee office in Bengaluru. After a day of hectic meetings, the MLAs were finally herded into the two buses and taken to Eagleton Resort in Bidadi in the evening.
Congress leader DK Shivakumar boarded the second bus ensuring all the MLAs were on it. The Eagleton Resort is the same place where Gujarat MLAs were brought in July 2017 as Congress tried to prevent horse trading during elections to the Rajya Sabha.
The Congress’ decision to shift MLAs to a resort came after word came in that Governor Vajubhai Vala was likely to call BS Yeddyurappa to form the government and the swearing-in-ceremony would be held on Wednesday. With things then set to boil down to a trust vote in the assembly, Congress leaders believed it was imperative to move the MLAs to a common location.
Earlier in the day, JD(S) chief and Chief Minister designate Kumaraswamy made serious allegations against the BJP and said that Rs 100 crore had been offered to MLAs to defect.
A Congress source told TNM that MLAs would be made to stay in the resort till the vote of confidence in the assembly.
Meanwhile, around 4 of the total 78 MLAs did not turn up at the KPCC office till 7.00 pm, when the buses left. However, Congress leaders expressed confidence that at least two of the four would eventually turn up.
Uphill task for BJP
By themselves, the BJP can win a floor test if they manage to bring down the strength of the House on the day of voting to 206. The halfway mark then becomes 103 -- and they can sail through with their party men. On the other hand, if they manage to get one of the two independents to join them, they will need the strength of the House to be 208 -- and they get both the independents to join them, they will need the number of members present and voting to be 210. That means they'll need anywhere between 11 and 15 members of Congress and JD(S) to either be absent from the House during the floor test, or to abstain from the vote.