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After Karnataka poll, Yeddyurappa elected House leader

Bengaluru: The newly elected Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislators in Karnataka on Wednesday elected B.S. Yeddyurappa as their legislative party leader and he soon staked claim to form the government though the party is eight seats short of a majority in the Assembly.

“We have staked claim to form the government as the single largest party with 104 newly elected legislators,” Yeddyurappa told reporters here after meeting Governor Vajubhai R. Vala at Raj Bhavan.

Earlier, the party MLAs unanimously elected the former chief minister and the BJP’s chief ministerial face Yeddyurappa as their legislative party leader.

“I have requested the Governor to allow me to take oath as the chief minister at the earliest and the Governor said he would take an appropriate decision soon,” he said.

Of the 222 constituencies where polling was held on May 12, the BJP won 104 seats while the Congress won 78 and Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) won 38 seats, along with its ally Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), throwing up a hung Assembly.

The BJP is eight short of the 112-halfway mark needed for a simple majority.

In a related development, the party’s legislator from Rajajinagar, S. Suresh Kumar, said the Congress was “shameless” to extend support to the JD-S after its leaders, including party president Rahul Gandhi, accused the regional party of being the ‘B-team’ of the BJP.

“Shocking to see a defeated Congress falling head over heels to extend unconditional support to the JD-S after dubbing it BJP’s B-team,” Kumar told reporters.

On Tuesday, the Congress extended unconditional support to the JD-S to form a government in the state.

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