Karnataka, one of the five states in South India has recently had its general assembly election on 12th May 2018. After the election held in 222 constituencies (India Today) of 224 constituencies, the result of the election was declared on 15th May 2018 with a verdict of a hung assembly (The Times of India). The incumbent government was defeated and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the single largest party, with 104 seats, but failed to reach the majority of seats required to form the Government.
The election has been very controversial since the declaration of the election date, followed by series of events and speeches by star campaigners during the election campaign. The election dates for the Karnataka election were announced by a local media house and the IT head of BJP (The New Indian Express) even before the official announcement by the Election Commission of India, which was later clarified by the ECI that the information is not accurate hence it is obviously not a leak of dates. Three days before the election nearly 10,000 original voter ID (Business Standard) card was seized in a flat in R.R. Nagar constituent assembly, where the assembly polling is postponed (The Hindu) to 28th May 2018 by the ECI.
As the Indian parliamentary elections are nearby, forming the government in Karnataka will be a major victory for BJP and the policies implemented by Prime Minister Modi (Hindustan Times) in any of the Southern Indian states. When the poll resulted in a hung assembly, the Indian National Congress with 78 seats decided to support (Economic Times) Janata Dal Secular (JDS) with 37 seats to form the government with HD Kumaraswamy from JDS as the Chief Minister candidate (The News Minute) of the alliance. Both BJP and the alliance government of JDS and INC met the Governor of Karnataka to get an invitation to form the government, where on 16th May 2018, the Governor Vajubhai Vala invited B. S. Yeddyurappa led BJP to swear as the Chief Minister of Karnataka on 17th May 2018, giving him 15 days time to prove the majority on the floor.
The Chief Minister candidate of INC-JDS alliance, HD Kumaraswamy, has alleged the BJP for offering 100 crore Indian rupees (NDTV) or 1.4 million dollars to support BJP in forming the government. Afraid of the possible horse trade, the INC and JDS alliance moved to the Supreme Court of India, challenging the decision (Hindustan Times) made by the Governor for not inviting the alliance which has the majority and to take a stay order on Yeddyurappa’s swearing ceremony which was scheduled on 17th May 2018. After the hearing of Yakub Memon’s case in July 2015 (The Hindu), where the 1993 Mumbai blast convict appealed the Supreme Court(SC) for a stay of his execution, for the second time in Indian history, the Supreme Court of India did a late night hearing on this case. According to the article 361 of the Indian Constitution, the Governor of the state shall not be answerable to any court for the exercise and performance of the powers and duties of his office, and the SC refused to give a stay (Outlook India) on the swearing ceremony of Yeddyurappa, and decided to hear the petition again on 18th May 2018.
On 17th May 2018, after getting a clearance by the SC, BS Yeddyurappa swear in as the 19th Chief Minister of Karnataka. The swearing ceremony was opposed by the alliance in front of the Karnataka assembly and the legislators were later transferred to a hotel (Firstpost) in Hyderabad, nearly 600 KM away from Bangalore.