Written byShalini Ojha
With the political crisis deepening, the Supreme Court will hear a plea filed by the saffron party demanding a quick floor test today.
But Chief Minister Kamal Nath isn't worried.
Nath's government in the central state faced an existential crisis after Jyotiraditya Scindia, a Congressman for nearly two decades, snapped ties with the party. 22 legislators also tendered their resignations, prompting BJP, which has 107 MLAs, to demand a floor test.
Last weekend, Governor Lalji Tandon ordered Nath to win the Assembly's trust on Monday but Speaker NP Prajapati took a lenient route.
Yesterday, when legislators met for the first day of the Budget Session, the Assembly was adjourned till March 26, in wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
This gave Nath a 10-day breather, but Tandon, who had earlier suggested upholding MP's dignity, wrote another letter asking the CM to take floor test by today, failing which it will be assumed his government is in minority.
Moving fast, BJP approached SC seeking directions for Nath regarding the floor test.
The saffron party is confident it will gain from the test and reminded of what happened in Karnataka last year.
In the southern state, the coalition government of JD(S) and Congress crumbled after 17 legislators quit. After they were barred from contesting by-polls, they went to SC, which uplifted the ban.
"In Karnataka, the Supreme Court upheld the disqualification of 17 rebel MLAs but struck down the provision to bar them from contesting elections for six years (till 2023). If that scenario plays out here, it benefits the BJP," a senior BJP leader told HT.
Meanwhile, the legislators who have resigned, and are camping in Bengaluru, rejected Congress' claims that they have been held "hostage".
"We are ready for any consequences," they said this morning, with one saying they got "freedom" now.
"Kamal Nath Ji never heard us even for 15 minutes. Then whom should we talk to for development work in our constituency?" MLA Govind Singh Rajput said.
With BJP pushing for a floor test within 12 hours, Nath hurled a dare towards the opposition.
"Those who claim that we don't have a majority should move a no-confidence motion against my government to get the floor test done," Nath, who has been flashing victory signs to media quite frequently, said.
And his predecessor Shivraj Singh Chouhan said even coronavirus can't save him.
Love Politics news?
Subscribe to stay updated.