Bhopal: Shivraj Singh Chouhan resigned as the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh on Wednesday. After putting in his papers, he said he was “free”. Accepting responsibility for his party’s debacle, Chouhan congratulated senior Congress leader Kamal Nath for the latter’s performance in the Assembly election. (Catch LIVE Updates of Assembly Election Results Here)

The BJP lost the state to Congress which fell short of the majority by just two seats and clinched 114 in the 230-seat Assembly.

“Ab mein mukt hoon, I am free. I have tendered my resignation to the honourable Governor. The responsibility of defeat is totally mine. I have congratulated Kamal Nath ji,” said Chouhan.

Quoting from a popular poem, he said, “Na haar mein, na jeet mein, kinchit nahin bhaybhit main, kartavya path par jo bhi mile, yeh bhi sahi woh bhi sahi (I am not scared of either win or loss… I am fine with whatever comes my way on the path of responsibility).”

Earlier, speculations were rife that the BJP, with 109 seats, would meet the Governor to stake claim to form the next government. Chouhan then put these speculations to rest by announcing, “We did not get the majority, will not stake claim to form Government, I am going to tender my resignation to the Governor.”

Chouhan then proceeded towards Governor Anandiben Patel’s residence to tender his resignation. He had been the Chief Minister of MP since 2005 and represented Budhni in the Assembly.

Meanwhile, the Mayawati-led BSP has extended support to the Congress in Madhya Pradesh.

Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav has also extended support to the Congress. An Independent MLA has also offered support to the Congress.

As far as the Congress is concerned, Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia are in the running for the Chief Minister’s post. Nath is the longest-serving and senior-most member of Lok Sabha. He was elected as the president of Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee in May 2018 to lead the party in these Assembly elections.

Scindia is a Harvard graduate with a royal family background. He was elected to Lok Sabha for the first time in February 2002 from Guna district which was earlier represented by his father Madhav Rao Scindia. He was re-elected in May 2004 and was introduced to the Union Council of Ministers in 2007 as Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology.