A crowd turning into a mob in a corridor. At least five men pulling and pushing a single man who stands in the middle. This was not a scene in a crowded street, but outside Karnataka Assembly Speaker Ramesh Kumar's office. As Chikkaballapur Congress MLA K Sudhakar came out of the Speaker's office after submitting his resignation, he was intercepted by other Congress leaders. KPCC President Dinesh Gundu Rao and former minister Priyank Kharge literally pulled Sudhakar to another Congress leader's office in the building. They seemed to want to take him into their "custody" before he also left to Mumbai to join the other rebel MLAs, beyond the Congress's reach.
Two more Karnataka Congress MLAs tendered their resignations to the Speaker Ramesh Kumarâ€™s office on Wednesday. Hoskote MLA MTB Nagaraj and Chikkaballapura MLA Sudhakar handed over their resignation letters on Wednesday afternoon.
Sudhakar was taken into Minister KJ George's office along with Priyank Kharge, Dinesh Gundu Rao and former Chief Minister and head of the coalition committee Siddaramaiah.
BJP State President Yeddyurappa told the media that he planned to file a police complaint because of the mob.
However, Ramesh Kumar speaking to the media confirmed that he has not yet accepted any resignations.
MTB Nagaraj and Sudhakar declined to speak to media as they walked out.
Sixteen MLAs have currently tendered their resignations in the state, bringing the Congress-JD(S) coalition governmentâ€™s number down to 101, including the Speaker and BSP MLA Mahesh. The BJP has 105 MLAs on its side. Two Independent MLAs have withdrawn support from the coalition government and pledged loyalty to the BJP. The majority mark for the Karnataka Assembly is currently 105.
There are likely to be more resignations on Wednesday.
High drama surrounding the Karnataka political crisis continued into Wednesday. Congress leader DK Shivakumar travelled to Mumbai to pacify 10 rebelling MLAs who were staying at Hotel Renaissance Powai. Shivakumar was not allowed to enter the hotel after the MLAs stated they felt â€śthreatenedâ€ť and called for police protection. Shivakumar was detained by police Wednesday afternoon after spending hours outside the hotel.