Justifying its move to stake claim along with the JDS to form the government, Congress communications in charge Randeep Surjewala said his party had acted as per constitutional norms and traditions.
He also cited the instance of BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee who was invited to form a government by the then president KR Narayanan, noting the guiding principle behind it was that a party or a combination of parties that has won the largest number of seats be invited.
“As Congress-JD(S) win 95 seats and lead in 20 seats, absolute majority for the coalition is clear. Coalition also has 56% vote share.
“Coalition leaders meeting the Governor shortly to stake claim as per established constitutional norms in Karnataka’s interests,” he tweeted.
Surjewala said Narayanan had set a fair and constitutionally correct precedent by inviting Atal Bihari Vajpayee to form and lead a coalition government on 12th March, 1998.
He also cited the president’s communiqué that “states clearly and is a guiding light which said that a combination of parties winning the most seats should be invited to form a government”.
Rejecting the BJP’s charge it was trying to come to power through the backdoor, the party also cited the cases of Goa, Manipur, Meghlaya, where the Congress could not form government despite emerging as the largest party.
“BJP’s claim of ‘single largest party’ to be invited is demolished by 3 recent precedents set by them-: (1) Goa (March 2017) Assembly Strength – 40. Congress – 17. BJP – 12. BJP was invited to form the Govt by Governor in a post poll coalition BJP+MGP+GFP,” he tweeted.
“(2) Manipur (March 2017) Assembly Strength – 60. Congress – 28. BJP – 21. BJP was invited to form the Govt by Governor in a post poll coalition. So much so, 1 independent MLA was detained at Imphal Airport through security agencies & handed over to BJP.”
“(3) Meghalaya (March 2018) Assembly Strength – 60. Congress – 21. BJP – 2. BJP was invited to form the Govt by Governor in post poll coalition with NPEP+UDP+PDF+HSDPDP,” he said on Twitter.