Madhya Pradesh: CM Kamal Nath resigns, BJP set to return to power
MP CM Kamal Nath addressed the media ahead of the floor test in the state assembly. MP assembly speaker NP Prajapati had announced that the trust-vote will be conducted at 2 PM.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath has announced his resignation during a press conference ahead of the proposed floor test in the assembly on Friday.
NP Prajapati, the MP assembly speaker, had announced that the floor test in the assembly would be conducted at 2 in the afternoon.
Last night, Speaker Prajapati had accepted the resignations of 22 Congress rebels, bringing down the number of the House to 206 legislators. Earlier today, he accepted the resignation of one Bharatiya Janata Party MLA, Sharad Kol.
The new majority mark of the MP assembly is 103. While the BJP has 106 MLAs on its side, the Congress has 92 legislators and support of 7 other MLAs, making it fall short of the majority.
The Supreme Court had ordered earlier that the floor test should be conducted in the MP assembly by show of hands and the entire proceeding should be videographed.
Watch: How the BJP managed to topple the Kamal Nath government and who could be the BJP's choice for the chief minister's office?
Celebrations at Madhya Pradesh BJP Office
Shivraj Singh Chouhan, former CM and BJP vice president, was leading the BJP camp in the Supreme Court and in the state.
After Nath's resignation, Chouhan addressed the media at the state unit headquarters. He said, "Kamal Nath ji was Chief Minister but it is Digvijay Singh who created situations which led to the fall of this government".
"This government has fallen under its own burden. The Congress needs to introspect what led their fall," Chouhan said.
Meanwhile, the BJP MLAs and workers had gathered at the party office to celebrate the toppling of the Kamal Nath government as it also marks the return of the BJP in the state.
#MadhyaPradesh: BJP leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan and other party leaders arrive at the party office in Bhopal.— ANI (@ANI) March 20, 2020
Kamal Nath has resigned as the Chief Minister of the state, ahead of the floor test which was to take place at the state Assembly today. pic.twitter.com/sXCSVr84IG
Blatant killing of democracy: Ashok Gehlot
Senior Congress leader and Rajasthan Cheif Minister Ashok Gehlot has dubbed the toppling of the Kamal Nath government as a "blatant killing of democracy". He accused the BJP of "dismantling the democratically elected government" of the Congress in Madhya Pradesh.
In December 2018, the Congress had swept the assembly elections of three states - Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, and Madhya Pradesh. Then party president Rahul Gandhi had reposed his faith in Ghelot and Nath to head the governments of Rajasthan and MP respectively.
The man who toppled the Kamal Nath government, Jyotiraditya Scindia made a similar remark. In his tweet, Scindia said, "It is the victory of truth. It is the victory of the people of Madhya Pradesh. I have always believed that politics should be done to serve the people. And the state government had deviated from this path."
मध्य प्रदेश में आज जनता की जीत हुई है। मेरा सदैव ये मानना रहा है कि राजनीति जनसेवा का माध्यम होना चाहिए, लेकिन प्रदेश सरकार इस रास्ते से भटक गई थी। सच्चाई की फिर विजय हुई है। सत्यमेवजयते।
— Jyotiraditya M. Scindia (@JM_Scindia) March 20, 2020
Kamal Nath to serve as caretaker Chief Minister
Governor Lalji Tandon has asked Kamal Nath to serve as the caretaker CM until the formation of the new government.
The BJP to stake claim to form the government
After Kamal Nath's resignation, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has become the single largest party in Madhya Pradesh. It has 106 legislators. Four independent MLAs could extend their support to the BJP.
After the resignation of 22 Congress MLAs and one BJP rebel, the majority mark in the MP assembly has been reduced to 103. At present, the BJP enjoys a comfortable majority in the state.
Kamal Nath submits his resignation to Governor
Chief Minister Kamal Nath has tendered his resignation to Governor Lalji Tandon. This brings an end to the 15-month-old Congress government in the state.
By-polls on 24 seats, Congress hopes to return
During the press conference, CM Kamal Nath had also indicated how the number game in Madhya Pradesh could again change in the coming future. The Congress hopes to return to power within six months in Madhya Pradesh.
22 Congress legislators had rebelled against the party and resigned from their memberships. Today, BJP rebel MLA Sharad Kol's resignation was accepted by the Madhya Pradesh assembly speaker NP Prajapati.
The resignation drama in the state has forced by-polls in at least 25 assembly constituencies.
Kamal Nath has indicated that the Congress will expose rebel legislators and sweep the by-polls. The by-polls are expected to be held within six months.
Congress had returned to power after 15 years in MP, couldn't hold the fort for more than 15 months
In December 2018, the joint camp of Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia had ensured the victory of the Congress party in Madhya Pradesh. The Congress had returned to power with 114 legislators. The BJP could manage to win only 109 of 230 seats.
The Congress formed the government with a thin majority with support from two BSP MLAs, one SP MLA, and four independent legislators in December 2018.
After 15 months, the Kamal Nath government has been toppled by the coup of the Scindia camp which started on March 10.
Will tender my resignation to Governor: Nath
Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath announced that he will tender his resignation to Governor Lalji Tandon at 1 in the afternoon.
"I have decided to give my resignation to the Governor. The reason behind my resignation is that I do politics of principles and I can't compromise on those principles," Nath said.
Earlier in the day, senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh had accepted that the Congress doesn't have the numbers to prove their majority in the state.
Nath claimed that throughout his political career he has never taken personal favours from any Chief Minister or minister of Madhya Pradesh.
"Not a single person can claim that I sought a single favour from anyone during 15-years of the BJP government in the state. During 40-years of my political career, no one can accuse me of taking personal favours," Nath said during the presser.
Gave corruption-free governance in the last 15 months: CM Nath
Congress leader and MP CM Kamal Nath claimed that in the past 15-months he had given corruption-free governance to Madhya Pradesh.
"During my political career, I have always politics of ethics," Nath said. He narrated the success story of the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh.
"In the coming days, the story of how 16 Congress MLAs were flown out of the state will come out. Who was behind it? Who made the arrangements? Who made the payment? The truth will come out," he said.
I proved my majority thrice in the last 15 months: MP CM Nath
"In the last 15-months, I had proved the majority of my government thrice. The BJP was frustrated as they couldn't topple my government," CM Nath said while accusing the BJP of trying to destabilise a democratically elected government.
Nath also said that in December 2018 the voters of MP had given the mandate to the Congress party for 5 years.
"The BJP was conspiring against our government from day one," Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath told media.
"The entire country has stood witness to how the BJP held our 22 MLAs captive in Karnataka," he said. He further added that the BJP and rebel Congress legislators have betrayed the voters of MP. "The voters of state will never forgive them," the outgoing MP CM said.