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Kamal Nath govt grows stronger, BJP faces setbacks

Congress could retain its majority mark if it wins an upcoming bypoll in Pawai assembly seat where a BJP MLA has been disqualified, in what’s turning out to be a series of setbacks for the BJP in Madhya Pradesh.

, ET Bureau|
Nov 05, 2019, 08.10 AM IST
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New Delhi: Congress has hit the majority mark on its own in Madhya Pradesh and could even retain it if it wins an upcoming bypoll in Pawai assembly seat where a BJP MLA has been disqualified, in what’s turning out to be a series of setbacks for the BJP in the state.

The BJP last month lost its Jhabua seat in a bypoll, reducing its tally to 108 in the 230-member assembly. The Congress, which had increased its number to 115 with the Jhabua win, now has a simple majority on its own as the strength of the House has been reduced to 229 with the Pawai seat becoming vacant after the Madhya Pradesh assembly chairman has disqualified BJP MLA Prahlad Lodhi as he is being convicted by a local court for two years in an assault case last week. “Congress became 115-seat strong after Jhabua and we will be 116-seat strong after the Pawai bypoll. Our government is strong and stable,” Congress spokesperson in Madhya Pradesh Shobha Oza told ET. BJP is now down to only 107 seats in the state assembly and is also said to be battling an internal tussle among its top leaders in MP. There are now question marks over the leadership of state BJP president Rakesh Singh despite the party winning all but one seat in Madhya Pradesh during the Lok Sabha elections four months ago. BJP’s leaders had threatened to rock the Congress boat in Madhya Pradesh assembly since but the Kamal Nath-led government seems to have outwitted the BJP so far.

“Our government was even strong before the Jhabua bypolls as two BSP MLAs, one SP MLA and four independents are strongly with us taking our strength to 121 MLAs. Now, we have 115 MLAs of our own after the Jhabua win. Further, two BJP MLAs during the last assembly session voted for us on a bill and vowed allegiance to us,” Oza said. BJP did not act against these two MLAs -- Narayan Trupathi and Sharad Kol -- for fear of reducing its numbers further in the assembly.



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