Karnataka governor Vajubhai Vala is faced with two possibilities -- either he allows the BJP-- the single largest party-- to form government in the state, or follow precedent of Goa and Manipur and lets the second largest party- the Congress to form government in alliance with the JD(S).
If it weren't for Goa and Manipur Assembly Elections 2017, the governor would have gone for the first option, as per the rulebook. But the rules have changed!
On March 12 last year, the Goa elections results threw up a fractured mandate, with the ruling Congress emerging as the single largest party, but below the half-way mark. The Congress had won 17 seats, close to the 21-mark, while the BJP could claim stake to 13 seats.
Election results notwithstanding, the BJP gave letters of support of 21 MLAs, from regional parties, and independent candidates, to the governor, who allowed the party to form the government.
While the Congress accused the BJP of "stealing the mandate" and the governor of acting in a "partisan manner", the latter went on to form government in Manipur the same way, wrestling the ruling and single largest party Congress out of power.
In Manipur, one Congress and one TMC MLA deflected to the BJP helping it to cross the simple majority mark despite being behind the ruling Congress. With the formal support from National People's Party and the LJP, the BJP formed government in the state, even though it did not have the majority.
The Congress was the closest with 28 seats against BJP's 21.
Going by the recent precedents, the Congress is expecting the governor to allow the party to form government in Karnataka, even as the BJP is finding ways of its own to prevent that from happening.
BJP's chief ministerial candidate BS Yeddyurappa met with the governor and reportedly appealed for a week's time to stake claim. Yeddyurappa, being the first one to approach the governor may have an edge over the Congress.
The governor had refused entry to a Congress delegation before meeting Yeddyurappa. The Congress delegation, along with the JD(S) then decided to meet the governor later in the evening today, with a formal letter of alliance.
It is yet to be known what the governor agreed on till the story was published. The BJP won 104 seats in the elections, while the Congress won 78. The JD(S) bagged 37 seats.