New Delhi: After days of suspense, the Congress chief minister-designates of Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh will take the oath of office on Monday. The swearing in-ceremonies are being seen as another show of Opposition unity as several regional leaders are expected to attend the event, scheduled to be held in Bhopal, Jaipur and Raipur.
In Madhya Pradesh, veteran Congress leader Kamal Nath (a nine-time parliamentarian from Chhindwara seat and currently president of the Madhya Pradesh Congress) will take the oath of office in the presence of several UPA leaders, including party president Rahul Gandhi, at the Jamboree Maidan. In Rajasthan Ashok Gehlot will be sworn in as the CM along with deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot. Meanwhile in Chhattisgarh, 58-year-old Bhupesh Baghel will take the oath of office.
While Congress president Rahul Gandhi will be attending all the three oath-taking ceremonies, other prominent opposition leaders likely to attend the events include former prime minister H D Devegowda and Karnataka chief minister H D Kumaraswamy and former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah.
Sources said the Congress has also invited the Aam Aadmi Party and its leader Sanjay Singh is likely to attend the events. “The Congress has invited our party and Arvind Kejriwal has authorised me to go as the party representative to Rajasthan,” IANS quoted AAP MP Sanjay Singh as saying.
While Andhra Pradesh chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu will be attending the events along with RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav, other leaders invited include AIUDF leader Badruddin Ajmal, TMC leader Dinesh Trivedi and LJD leader Sharad Yadav.
Among other opposition leaders who have been invited and are likely to attend the ceremonies include JMM’s Hemant Soren, Jharkhand Vikas Manch leader Babulal Marandi, Swabhimani Paksh leader Raju Shetty and former Bihar chief minister Jitan Ram Manjhi.
Madhya Pradesh: Swearing-in ceremony of Kamal Nath at 1:30 PM
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister-designate Kamal Nath will take oath at 1.30 pm at the Jamboree Maidan in Bhopal The ceremony will be preceded by an all-religion prayer meeting. Besides, Congress president Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi former PMs Manmohan Singh and HD Deve Gowda are also expected to grace the event.
Nine-time Chhindwara Lok Sabha MP Nath was chosen as the leader of the Congress Legislature Party Thursday and was invited to form the government by the governor on Friday. The Congress won 114 seats in the 230-member House and then secured the support of seven more MLAs, comprising two from the BSP, one from the SP and four Independents.
Rajasthan: Swearing-in ceremony of Ashok Gehlot, Sachin Pilot at 10 AM
For the oath taking ceremony of Ashok Gehlot as Chief Minister and Sachin Pilot as the Deputy CM of Rajasthan, a galaxy of political leaders and Congress workers will descend on the premises of the historic Albert Hall at 10 AM in Jaipur.
Congress party chief Rahul Gandhi, Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, Puducherry CM V Narayanasamy, Punjab CM Amarinder Singh, former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda are expected to attend the ceremony along with a host of other political leaders.
Chhattisgarh: Swearing-in ceremony of Bhupesh Baghel at 4:30 PM
In Chhattisgarh, the oath-taking ceremony will be held at 4:30 PM at Science College Ground in Raipur. Earlier on Sunday, a delegation of newly-elected Congress MLAs led by Baghel visited the Raj Bhavan and handed over a letter staking claim to form government to Secretary of the Governor, Surendra Kumar Jaiswal. Jaiswal received the letter on behalf of the governor as she was not in the state.
Baghel, MLA from Patan constituency and state Congress chief, was named as next chief minister of Chhattisgarh at CLP meeting on December 16. In the two-phase polls on November 12 and November 20, the Congress romped home to power in Chhattisgarh after 15 years with a two-third majority, winning 68 seats in the 90-member House. The BJP, in power in the state since 2003, was reduced to 15 seats.