Bhopal, March 20 (IANS) Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath handed over his resignation letter to Governor Lalji Tandon at 1.30 p.m., half an hour before the scheduled special session for the floor test on Friday.
Tandon accepted his resignation, an official of Raj Bhawan said. The resignation obviated the floor test and therefore the special session that was to be held on the order of the Supreme Court. Speaker Narmada Prasad Prajapati then adjourned the House sine die.
The House might be called on March 26 now to conduct the Rajya Sabha elections. Touching scenes of the members hugging each other marked the end of the special session that turned out to be a non-event.
The day began with the news of BJP MLA Sharad Kol of Beohari resigning his membership of the House. With his resignation being accepted the strength of the House came down further. Expectations were raised with the hope of Congress causing some more dents in the opposition. The reducing numbers of the House were only helping the BJP consolidate its position.
The Congress which came to power after 15 years of struggle squandered the state in just 15 months. All the BJP legislators who had lodged themselves at a resort 50 kms away from Bhopal returned to the House only to be told no floor test was needed. The Congress’ bravado seen till Friday morning evaporated in the face of BJP’s stubborn resistance.
Kamal Nath on Friday made an impassioned speech before the media before proceeding to hand his resignation to the Governor and end an 18-day drama that was enacted across Haryana, Bengaluru, New Delhi and Bhopal.
“In my 40-year-long public life, I have practiced politics of propriety and valued democratic norms with utmost priority. But what transpired in the last two weeks is a new chapter of devaluation of democratic values,” his resignation letter read.
In the letter, he also congratulated the new chief minister of the state and said he will extend all help in the development of the state.
His resignation opened the door for the BJP to form the next government. The party has a majority with 104 members in a House reduced to 206 members after the resignation of 22 Congress rebels mostly of Jyotiraditya Scindia’s camp. The overall strength of the House was 230 before the demise of two members. “We are on the verge of forming the government,” a BJP leader said.
Kamal Nath told the media about his resignation after his party’s tally came down to 92 and allies refused to come to the aid of the party. “I have today decided to tender my resignation to the Governor to value the country’s democratic values. Today will be followed by tomorrow, and the day after. The public which was betrayed by the greedy is a witness,” he said.