BJP claims Congress government in minority in Madhya Pradesh; asks for special session

Cong has 114 Assembly seats, 2 short of majority, and is in power with support from BSP and Samajwadi Party

  • Published 21.05.19, 3:33 AM
  • Updated 21.05.19, 3:42 AM
  • 2 mins read
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Madhya Pradesh Chief minister Kamal Nath Source: @OfficeOfKNath

The BJP wrote to Madhya Pradesh governor Anandiben Patel on Monday claiming the state’s Congress government had lost its majority and demanding a special Assembly session.

Congress sources dismissed any immediate threat to their government and suggested the BJP was merely flexing its muscles to mount pressure on polling officials ahead of Thursday’s counting of Lok Sabha polls.

“We are sending a letter to the governor requesting an Assembly session as there are a lot of issues.… The government will fall on its own,” state leader of the Opposition Gopal Bhargav said.

“I don’t believe in horse-trading but I feel its (the state government’s) time has come and it will have to go soon.”

Chief minister Kamal Nath responded promptly: “They (the BJP) have been trying this since day one. We have proved our majority at least four times in the last five months. They want to do it again — we have no problem. They’ll try their best to disturb the present government to save themselves from getting exposed. Our government is ready for a floor test.”

Congress sources flagged the timing of the letter, which comes a day after exit polls predicted an NDA victory in the general election with a huge lead from Madhya Pradesh, a state the BJP had lost to the Congress last December.

“What new development has taken place today? Has any MLA defected?” a senior Congress politician said. “They just want to tell the officials involved in the counting process, ‘We are coming not only at the Centre but also in the state. Toe our line’.”

Exit polls have suggested a landslide for the BJP in Madhya Pradesh, barely giving 2 or 3 of the 29 seats to the Congress, which should have been in its “honeymoon period” in the state. Although the Congress had expected a tough fight, senior leaders had hoped to win at least 10 to 12 seats.

The Congress has 114 of the state’s 230 Assembly seats — two short of majority — and is in power with support from the BSP and the Samajwadi Party, who together have three MLAs. The BJP has 109 members. Bhargav said several Congress MLAs were disgruntled and ready to jump ship.

Congress leaders are themselves not very confident of the state government’s survival in the long run if Narendra Modi returns to the Centre with a thumping majority.

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