Former union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia resigned from the Congress on Tuesday after his meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, affirming speculation that he is set to cross over to the BJP a day after he flew out 17 of his loyalist party MLAs.
Scindia started from his residence in Delhi after 10 am and went to meet Home Minister Amit Shah, after which both of them drove down together to the residence of the prime minister.
Shortly after the meeting, Scindia tweeted his letter of resignation from the Congress in which he said it was time for him to move on after working with the Congress for 18 years
To reflect and realize the aspirations of my people and my workers I believe it is best that I now look ahead at a fresh start,” said the letter to Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi.
Scindia is set to join the BJP sometime today,. The day is also the birth anniversary of his father, the late Madhavrao Scindia, who was a union minister in the Congress governments led by Rajiv Gandhi and PV Narasimha Rao. ET Reported
The BJP has called for a meeting of its legislature party at 6 pm, where former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is likely to be elected the leader. Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, the party vice president in charge of Madhya Pradesh rushed to Bhopal and held meetings with Chouhan and BJP MLAs.
Gopal Bhargava, the present leader of opposition in the assembly, told reporters there was nothing left now in the Kamal Nath government and that the BJP was willing to stake a claim “if people wanted”.
Matters reached a flashpoint on Tuesday when 17 Congress MLAs close to Scindia left for Bengaluru in a chartered flight and were put up at a resort in BJP-ruled Karnataka.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath – who barely had time to recover from an earlier bout of dissidence by seven other MLAs – rushed to meet Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and then announced a rejig of his state cabinet in a desperate bid to get some of the MLAs to come around.
The late-night move saw Nath getting 20 of his ministers to resign from the cabinet to signal to dissidents that many slots were open for the taking if they chose to come back to Bhopal.
The Congress leadership was also reportedly trying to talk to Scindia to offer him either a Rajya Sabha nomination or the post of state party president — currently held by Nath — but attempts to reach him failed.
The move puts the Congress government in a severe crisis. Of the 230 seats in the MP assembly, 120 were held by the ruling combine of Congress and minor parties, 107 by the BJP and two were vacant.
The crisis also comes just three days ahead of the deadline for filing nominations to the Rajya Sabha, in which both the Congress and BJP are locked in a bitter contest for the third seat.