File photo of Kamal Nath
File photo of Kamal Nath

Kamal Nath may quit before floor test on Friday


Bhopal, March 20, 2020

With the Speaker of the Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha Narmada Prasad Prajapati accepting the resignations of the 16 rebel Congress legislators holed up in Bengaluru, it has become clear the Kamal Nath government will quit on Friday.

In a frantic effort to pull off a near impossible win in Friday's floor test, the Congress held three meetings in quick succession till 10.45 p.m..

Will there be a floor test at all? There was no indication of the business list for Saturday's sitting till midnight on Thursday. The Vidhan Sabha Secretariat had kept the proposal for the special session in compliance of Supreme Court directive to begin at 2 p.m. on Friday.

The Speaker's approval for the proposal finally came shortly after Thursday midnight.

The Chief Minister announced his decision to address a press conference at noon on Saturday. This was a clear indication of an impending resignation during the press conference.

After the meeting at the Chief Minister's house, the entire legislature party minus the 16 MLAs holed up in Bengaluru went into another huddle at state cabinet minister Sajjan Singh Verma's house to see if a last-ditch effort could be made to survive.

The legal eagles in the party suggested filing a curative petition on Friday before the Supreme Court. Even that seemed unlikely when the Speaker accepted the resignations.

The BJP also held frequent meetings till midnight. The party demanded security throughout the route of the buses from the resort off Bhopal to the Vidhan Sabha. Former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan told the media at 12.40 a.m. that it was for the government to ensure the Supreme Court's orders were enforced in letter and spirit.

Chouhan has written letters to the Speaker and the Vidhan Sabha Secretary also.

The BJP spokespersons continued to address the media persons till after midnight and said the Congress government expectedly fell under the weight of its own contradictions.

Now the strength of the House has been reduced to 206 and the BJP with a strength of 107 has the numbers to stake claim for formation of the government. The Congress numbers have been reduced to 92. There are four independents and two BSP and one SP member in the House.