Kolkata

BJP leaders luring Congress MLAs in Madhya Pradesh with ₹25-35 crore, alleges Digvijaya Singh

Digvijaya Singh (File photo)

Digvijaya Singh (File photo)  

The Congress and the BJP in Madhya Pradesh on Monday launched into a spat over the stability of the Kamal Nath government, with Congress MP Digvijaya Singh accusing BJP leaders of bribing its MLAs with ₹25-35 crore, a charge dismissed by BJP vice president Shivraj Singh Chouhan. 

Stating that the BJP was not ready to sit in the opposition, he told reporters in New Delhi that former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Minister Narottam Mishra and everyone who “looted Madhya Pradesh for 15 years”, were openly offering MLAs the bribe. 

“Take ₹5 crore now, second installment after the Rajya Sabha election, and the final one after toppling the government,” said Mr. Singh, retiring from the Rajya Sabha later the month. Of the three seats that would fall vacant from Madhya Pradesh, the two parties would secure one each in their kitty, given the seat arithmetic in the Vidhan Sabha. For the third seat, however, Congress will require the continuing support of independents, BSP and SP MLAs. 

Mr. Singh asserted the State was not Karnataka, and that no Congress MLA was on sale. “The BJP must sit in the opposition for five years and then we’ll see in the field,” he challenged the BJP. 

Referring to the recent string of alleged income tax raids against government officials and associates in Congress-led Chhattisgarh, Mr. Singh added, “On the one hand the BJP government’s IT,ED and CBI are raiding States where the Congress has an elected government, but why is it quiet on promises being made to openly distribute crores of rupees?” 

Around eight-ten MLAs had received offers, and they had apprised the Congress, he said. “I do not make an accusation without evidence.” 

Earlier there was a dispute between Mr. Chouhan and Mishra, he alleged, but now they had reached an understanding that one of them would be the Chief Minister, the other Deputy Chief Minister. “And both of them are calling Congress MLAs. This won’t be tolerated,” he said. 

Meanwhile, Mr. Chouhan, in Bhopal, rubbished the allegations by describing Mr. Singh a "habitual liar". “He wants to show his importance to the Chief Minister, blackmail him as some work may not have been done. [He wants to] Build pressure by saying whatever you want. I won’t say anything more,” he said.

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Printable version | Apr 9, 2020 2:06:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/kolkata/bjp-luring-cong-mlas-in-mp-digvijaya/article30967137.ece

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