New Delhi: The ‘one-man’ Madhya Pradesh government, struggling to contain the coronavirus pandemic in the state, was finally expanded as Narottam Mishra, Kamal Patel, Meena Singh, Tulsi Silawat and Govind Singh Rajput were on Tuesday sworn-in as cabinet ministers at a ceremony at the Raj Bhavan in Bhopal. Also Read - Amid COVID-19 Crisis, MP Cabinet Expansion at 12 PM Today; Here's Who All Will Take Oath
The development comes nearly a month after the BJP, which lost the state Assembly Election in December 2018, staged a comeback following the collapse of the Congress government under Kamal Nath.
However, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who took oath as Chief Minister for a fourth term on March 23, had, since then, been working ‘alone,’ triggering major criticism and leading to worsening of the COVID-19 crisis in the state.
Madhya Pradesh is, notably, one of the coronavirus epicentres in the country, with a total of 1,485 cases, including 74 deaths. Its commercial capital, Indore, has the maximum number of cases in the state (897, icnluding 52 deaths) and is one of the districts in the country where, as per a note by the Centre, the situation is ‘especially serious.’
Last month, a group of MLAs ‘loyal’ to Jyotiraditya Scindia, who resigned from the Congress and joined the BJP a day later, had rebelled against CM Kamal Nath, bringing his government on the verge of collapse.
The 15-month government finally fell on March 20 after Kamal Nath tendered his resignation just hours ahead of the Supreme Court ordered floor test.