Bhopal: Insisting it is Chief Minister Kamal Nath and not the BJP that is responsible for “breaking” the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh, three-time CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan said this is like a “ghar wapsi” for Jyotiraditya Scindia.
“We have not done any jod-tod. If anybody is responsible for breaking the government (in Madhya Pradesh), it is Kamal Nath and the Congress,” Chouhan told ThePrint.
“Their own leaders, including Jyotiraditya Scindia, are alleging that all corruption records have been broken, promises have not been fulfilled, farmer loans not waived off etc. Congress’ own people have got angry and left the party. What is our role in this?”
On Wednesday, former union minister and former Guna MP Jyotiraditya Scindia formally joined the BJP, a day after leaving the Congress. With this, the Kamal Nath-led government in the state finds itself in a deep crisis, particularly with 22 of its MLAs also having quit. The Congress has 114 MLAs in the 230-member assembly.
‘Looks like Congress has lost majority’
Chouhan has had a busy few days, meeting visitors and answering incessant calls, with his party in the midst of frenzied activity and constant strategising.
While the BJP is trying to cobble together enough numbers to form the government — after it lost the 2018 state assembly polls by a whisker — Chouhan insists the party has no role to play.
“This is Congress’ internal problem. This has nothing to do with the BJP. The Congress government ruined the state, broke all records of corruption. The BJP is now closely monitoring the situation and we will decide what to do next,” Chouhan said, as he evaded questions on whether he will become CM for the fourth time.
The senior BJP leader, however, seems confident that the Congress has lost the number-game.
“Given the situation today, for which Congress itself is responsible, it seems the state government has lost the majority,” Chouhan said.
‘We want everybody who is significant’
The big question, however, has been on the role Scindia will play, given that the BJP already has a stalwart like Chouhan in the state, who remains a popular leader despite losing the last election.
There has also been talk of how the BJP will manage to fit two such leaders in one state, but the party seems clear that Chouhan will be its man in Madhya Pradesh, while it will give Scindia a more national role along with a Rajya Sabha seat.
Scindia may have formally joined BJP only today, but the party has for long been planning this move.
“BJP is a democratic party and it is in our nature to want everybody who is significant in their areas to join us.” Chouhan said.
“Jyotiraditya Scindia toh ghar waapas aa rahe hai (Scindia is returning home). Rajmata ji (Vijaya Raje Scindia) had a big role to play in building the Jana Sangh in the country and in MP. Now her grandson has come to the party and we have welcomed him wholeheartedly. BJP will benefit from him joining the party.”