Chief Minister Kamal Nath to meet Madhya Pradesh governor today.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath will meet Governor Lalji Tandon this morning three days after 22 Congress MLAs resigned, pushing the state government into crisis. The resignations were followed by former union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia's high-profile crossover from the Congress to the BJP.
The ruling party may also seek postponement of assembly session, which was scheduled to begin next week (March 16), amid coronavirus scare.
The 11 am meeting between Mr Nath and Governor Lalji Tandon, who returned to Bhopal last night after a Holi vacation, comes as deadline nears for rebel MLAs to appear before Assembly Speaker Narmada Prasad Prajapati and submit their resignations.
Mr Prajapati had issued notices to 13 of 22 Congress MLAs, including six ministers, who resigned on Tuesday, asking them to appear before him on Friday and Saturday. Speaking to NDTV, NP Prajapati had said the MLAs will have to submit their resignation letters in person.
"As per the law, those resigning will have to first appear before the Speaker personally, after which only I will look into the available evidences/facts before deciding as per merits of the case," he said.
Mr Scindia – once close to the Gandhis – resigned from the Congress on Tuesday, nearly two decades after he joined the party. He joined the BJP the next day.
Ahead of his exit, 19 MLAs – his loyalists – were flown to Bengaluru in BJP-ruled Karnataka. Many of them have reportedly expressed reluctance to join the BJP.
As the ruling Congress makes desperate attempts to reach the legislators in Bengaluru, it has also filed petitions before the speaker, seeking their disqualification.
The Congress has 120 MLAs in Madhya Pradesh, four more than the majority mark of 116 in the 230-member assembly. If the resignations of 22 MLAs are accepted, the majority mark will fall to 104. This will make it easier for the BJP – with 107 MLAs – to stake claim to power.
Both the parties have stepped up efforts to guard their flock. While Congress has moved 94 MLAs to Jaipur, the BJP has moved 102 MLAs to a five-star hotel in Gurgaon.
Meanwhile, Mr Scindia, who was nominated by the BJP for one of the two Rajya Sabha seats in Madhya Pradesh soon after he joined the party on Wednesday, will file his nomination today.