It was an anticlimactic Thursday in Karnataka, where a combative Congress-JD(S) coalition used arguments and discussions in the Assembly to delay the trust vote by another day. However, the Governor's intervention — in form of a letter to the Chief Minister, asking him to hold the floor test by 1.30pm on Friday — has dampened the ruling partners' plans to delay the vote further in a bid to buy time and possibly pressurise the rebel MLAs to return.
An earlier letter to the Speaker by Governor Vajubhai Vala to conduct the floor test by the end of Thursday was merely dismissed as a suggestion and not an order. "Though a message as contemplated under Article 175(2) is sent to the Speaker, I am informed that the House is adjourned today... Under these circumstances, I require you to prove your majority on the floor of the house on or before 1.30 pm tomorrow," stated the Governor's letter.
The letter will further fuel debate in the house, with arguments also raging over the ambiguity over the constitutional right of a party to issue whip to its members during a trust vote. A whip, when issued, compels members to attend the house on the day of trust vote and vote in favour of the said party.