New Delhi: Annoyed over the recommendation of President rule by Governor H R Bhardwaj, the Bharatiya Janata Party paraded its 114 legislators from Karnataka including the Chief Minister before President Pratibha Patil on Tuesday.

The BJP delegation led by party president Nitin Gakari sought the rejection of Bhardwaj’s recommendation for imposition of President’s rule and demanded his immediate recall.

After the Governor’s recommendation, BJP is all geared up to take him head on. Gadkari along with other senior party Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj, Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa and 114 other MLAs presented themselves before the President and handed over a memorandum containing their list of demands.

After the meeting Gadkari said, “We met the President and demanded that she give us
protection. We asked her that no action should be taken on the report submitted by the Governor who has recommended President's Rule in the state. President's Rule should not be imposed in the state." He maintained that since the President is the guardian of the Constitution, BJP has decided to take the issue to her.
   
Gadkari said he had apprised Patil of the Governor's actions and how he had again recommended President's Rule in Karnataka though the government had a majority.
"Since he has time and again acted against the Constitution he should be called back. We told the President that she should exercise the powers she has to recall the
Governor," Gadkari said.

BJP claims to have the support of 121 MLAs in the 224-member Karnataka Assembly. Of these, 114 were present today while five had reportedly sent letters of support to
Yeddyurappa. One party MLA is travelling abroad and another could not be present as he has undergone a heart surgery.

"The strength of the government should be tested on the floor of the House. The attitude of the Governor is undemocratic," Gadkari said.
 
The President heard them patiently and promised to look into the matter, sources said.
      
An NDA delegation, led by senior BJP leader L K Advani, had on Monday called on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to demand initiation of the process for removal of the
Governor.

Governor defends his stand

However, an unfazed Bhardwaj, whose recommendation has not found favour with the Centre, hit back saying Constitutional mechanism has broken down in the state because of the collusion between the Speaker and the Chief Minister that led to disqualification of rebel MLAs.

In Bangalore, Bhardwaj rejected as "baseless" the allegations that he recommended President's rule on the ground that the Government had lost majority.

"First of all an impression is being created that despite the Government enjoying the support of the majority of the members of the Legislative Assembly, Governor submitted
the report for invoking the provisions of Article 356 (1) of the Constitution on the grounds that the Government lost themajority. This is completely baseless", a Raj Bhavan
communique said.

JPN/Agencies