Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Friday submitted his resignation to the Governor Lalji Tandon after his government fell short of the majority mark. Before announcing his resignation, he hit out at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for plotting against him.
The Supreme Court had on Thursday ordered chief minister Kamal Nath-led Congress government to face a floor test in the MP Vidhan Sabha by today. As per the apex court’s order, the trust vote has been mentioned in the Assembly’s list of businesses for today at 2 pm. Ahead of the floor test, Kamal Nath addressed media to announce his resignation.
The Congress-led government had been pushed to the brink following of former Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia. The state assembly speaker Narmada Prasad Prajapati late Thursday night accepted the resignations of the remaining 16 rebel Congress MLAs who have been in Bengaluru since March 9.
Elections to the Madhya Pradesh assembly were held in November 2018 along with that for Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. This was months ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. The Congress won all three states, but the margin in Madhya Pradesh was hairline. In the 230-member assembly, Congress won 114 and the BJP 109. The BSP won 2, SP 1, and Independents 4 seats.
The number required to form the government was 116. The Congress was short of two, but it managed to cobble up an alliance with the BSP, SP, and Independents. This is how Kamal Nath’s government survived its 15-month tenure.
While the assembly election result gave Madhya Pradesh a new government after 15 years, it also sowed the seeds of the present political drama.
The fact that the difference in seats between the BJP and the Congress was thinly compounded with the fact that the government was surviving on the support of seven non-Congress MLAs four of them being Independents, exposed its vulnerability.
For the BJP, it meant opportunity. What was required was the right time to strike. And it was provided by Congress itself.