India court allows Modi's BJP to form state govt despite lacking majority

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In the 224-seat Assembly, the BJP has 104 MLAs while the Congress has 78 and the JD (S) 38. Reiterating the confidence of winning majority on the floor of the House, he said, "I do not think we need 15 days to prove majority, despite the governor giving us time".

The case was heard by Justices Arjan Kumar Sikhri, Ashok Bhushan, and Sharad Arvind Bobde.

Congress chief Rahul Gandhi tweeted, "Today's Supreme Court order, vindicates our stand that Governor Vala acted unconstitutionally". He also claimed that the Congress MLAs, who had been holed up inside a resort and are now being taken to Kerala, will vote for them (the BJP).

Rohatgi told the bench that there was no pre-poll alliance between the Congress and JDS and they have formed an "unholy alliance" after the elections. The BJP lawyers have not divulged the information on the letter by the party in the court.

The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to stay BJP leader B S Yeddyurappa's swearing-in as Karnataka chief minister after a rare post-midnight courtroom hearing on Congress-JD (S) combine's bid to stall the government formation. "We are waiting for them, in another two hours they will come, (JD-S) and Congress both".

The bench had adjourned the matter asking the BJP counsel to produce the two letters written by Yeddyurappa to the governor.

Venugopal told the bench that Yeddyurappa was being represented by Rohatgi, who placed the letters before the bench. The question, therefore, is whether the governor exercised his discretion while inviting the BJP to form the government despite the fact that the party did not have the required numbers to do so?

The apex court asks on what basis the governor decides who can provide stable government- the single largest party or a coalition party with majority.

Kerala Tourism minister Kadakampally Surendran earlier invited Congress and JD-S MLAs from Karnataka to their state to avoid alleged horse-trading and poaching bid by the BJP.

The leader pointed out that Modi and Shah deliberately stayed away from Yeddyurappa's swearing-in also because the issue was pending before the Supreme Court.

One thousand farmers from the state will also be allowed each year to travel to countries like Israel and China to study the best practices in agriculture under the "Chief Minister's Fellowship for Agriculture", the party had said prior to the election.

"It is just a number game; one who enjoys the majority should be invited to form the government", the court added. "Stopped legally, they will now try money & muscle, to steal the mandate", he wrote on the micro-blogging site.

The BJP has 104 MLAs in the Karnataka assembly, eight short of the magic figure of 112. In Manipur, Goa and Meghalaya, the respective governors had changed the rules of the game by saying no single largest party will form the government if someone else had the numbers.