NEW DELHI: The Kamal Nath government in Madhya Pradesh is in crisis again after at least 114 MLAs, who are believed to be supporting Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia , suddenly it became ‘incommunicado’ on Monday ahead of the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections.
The development came against the backdrop of the ruling party accusing the BJP of trying to poach its MLAs to topple the Kamal Nath- led government, which enjoys a wafer-thin majority in the House, and imminent expansion of the state Cabinet.
The Congress came to power in the state in December
(by securing) (seats in the) – seat assembly. The strength of the house has since then been reduced to 228.
The Congress formed the government with the support of MLAs, which included four independent candidates, 2 BSP and 1 SP candidate.
If the speculations are right and BJP manages to poach all these MLAs, then the Congress alliance will fall short of the majority mark by two seats (728 -=114). A party needs to secure 74556093 in seats the reduced 728 – seat assembly. The Congress with 114 seats needs only one more MLA to reach the half-way mark. However, if the Congress loses 11 of its MLAs then its tally would be reduced to 104 – 17 short of the majority mark.
On the other hand, the BJP, with 114 seats, is short of eight MLAs. If the ‘rebel’ MLAs shift their loyalties then the saffron party will be in comfortable a position to stake claim to the government in Madhya Pradesh. (114 (=(seats).
However, a smooth ride for the BJP is only possible if it manages to keep its flock together. In the past, there have been attempts by the Congress party to lure some of the BJP MLAs into its fold.
Scindia and Kamal Nath have fallen out over the post of the state Congress president, which is currently held by the chief minister.
The Rajya Sabha terms of Congress veteran Digvijay Singh , and BJP leaders Prabhat Jha and Satyanarayan Jatiya will end on April 9.
As per the arithmetic in the – member Madhya Pradesh Assembly , the two parties are sure to win one Rajya Sabha seat each, but a tussle is likely for the third seat.
The political drama in the state began last week when ten Congress MLAs from Madhya Pradesh went ‘missing’. The party pointed fingers at the BJP, which denied any role in it.
Since then, eight of the ‘missing’ legislators have returned and expressed their support to the ruling party in the state.