With Jyotiraditya Scindia’s exit, political drama unfolds in India’s Madhya Pradesh


Jyotiraditya Scindia (FILE PHOTO)
Jyotiraditya Scindia (FILE PHOTO)

LONG-TERM Congress leader and former minister Jyotiraditya Scindia resigned from the party’s primary membership on Tuesday (10), moments after meeting prime minister Narendra Modi.

He shared the resignation letter dated March 9, 2020, on social media.

Soon after his resignation, 22 legislators of the congress party in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh have also tendered their resignation, leaving the future of the 15 months old Kamal Nath government in balance.

A shell-shocked Congress, in a largely symbolic move of no consequence, expelled Scindia, the party general secretary and scion of the erstwhile Gwalior royal family, on charges of anti-party activities.

The Madhya Pradesh assembly has a strength of 230 members. Two members have died since the assembly elections were held in 2018. With this, the effective strength falls to 228 and the number required to form the government is 115.

The members tally is Congress (114), BJP (109), BSP (2), Samajwadi Party (1) and Independents (4).

The Congress alone does not enjoy a majority in the Madhya Pradesh assembly and was running the government with the support of the BSP and SP.

There have been reports that Scindia was eyeing for one of the three Rajya Sabha seats from Madhya Pradesh which are going to polls.

Mahanaryaman Scindia hailed his father Jyotiraditya Scindia’s decision to quit the Congress, saying it takes courage to resign from a legacy and his family has never been power hungry.

If Jyotiraditya Scindia joins the BJP, it is possible that he would be sent to the Rajya Sabha on a BJP ticket and may even get a ministership in the Narendra Modi government at the Centre.

Effectively, Scindia’s exit will pave way for the BJP to form the government.