New Delhi: 22 ‘rebel’ Congress Madhya Pradesh MLAs, whose resignations from the party earlier this month eventually led to the collapse of the Kamal Nath-led Congress government in the state, on Saturday joined the BJP, just a day after Nath stepped down as the Chief Minister. Also Read - 'Just a Short Rest,' Madhya Pradesh Congress Predicts Kamal Nath to be Back as Chief Minister Soon
On March 9, the 22 MLAs, who are loyal to Jyotiraditya Scindia, who himself joined the BJP two days later, had resigned from the Congress and taken to Bengaluru, allegedly by the BJP. They refused to consider their resignation despite multiple attempts by the party to bring them back, eventually leading to Kamal Nath resigning as the Chief Minister on Friday, nearly two hours before he was to face a floor test in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly, as ordered by the Supreme Court on Thursday.
Of the 22 MLAs, six were ministers in the Kamal Nath government.
Welcoming them to the BJP, Scindia tweeted: “Taking a pledge to work for Madhya Pradesh’s development and progress, all 22 former Madhya Pradesh Congress MLAs, all of whom are like my family members, today joined the BJP at the residence of our national president JP Nadda.”
This means that the BJP, which is yet to stake claim to form government in the state, can now do so as today’s development takes its numbers in the 230-seat Madhya Pradesh Assembly well above the majority mark of 116. The Congress, which was in power with the support of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Samajwadi Party (SP) and two independents, now has just 92 MLAs of its own in the Assembly.
With the support of the BSP, SP and independents, its strength in the Assembly was 121.