Both Congress and JDS were unwilling to reveal the destination

A night of high drama Congress and JDS MLAs taken out of Bengaluru in buses
news Politics Friday, May 18, 2018 - 01:35

With pressure building on the JD(S) and Congress to keep their flock together, MLAs of both parties were herded onto buses again around 11 pm on Thursday.

Speaking to TNM, former Home Minister Ramalinga Reddy said that the Congress MLAs would be going to Kochi. Other Congress leaders told the media that they were off to Puducherry.

But as TV channel crews followed the buses, it was evident by 1.00 am that all the MLAs from both parties were going to Hyderabad.

Congress and JD(S) leaders claimed that the decision to go by bus in the night was taken after the Civil Aviation ministry denied permission for special flights to take off.

JD(S) chief HD Kumaraswamy alleged that the Centre did not give them permission to leave in a private jet to Kochi.

However, Civil Aviation ministry Jayant Sinha claimed this was 'fake news'.

Another Congress source told TNM that none of the airlines or groups were willing to give chartered flights, fearing 'backlash'.

The decision to move MLAs in the night came after a BJP leader's relative was caught at the Shangri-La hotel in Bengaluru where JD(S) leaders were staying.

Moreover, BS Yeddyurappa had issued transfer orders for four IPS officers including the Superintendent of Police of Ramanagaram. This is the town in Bidadi where the Eagleton Resort in which Congress MLAs were lodged is located.

Yeddyurappa also issued orders for security to be withdrawn from Eagleton Resort.

The BJP currently has 104 elected members while the Congress-JD(S) alliance together have 116 MLA-elects.

Resort politics is not new to Karnataka and the state perhaps holds the record for the highest number of times this trick has been resorted to by political leaders.

In 1983, Ramakrishna Hegde, who wanted to protect his government from being dissolved by the then-Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, had taken the MLAs to a resort in Devanahalli.

BS Yeddyurappa had shipped off MLAs to luxurious resorts to save the government in 2008. During crucial trust votes in the Assembly, around 80 BJP MLAs were taken away to a luxury resort on the outskirts of Bengaluru multiple times between 2009 and 11.



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