Other States

Kamal Nath government will survive BJP machinations: Bhupesh Baghel

Bhupesh Baghel   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

The Congress government in Madhya Pradesh will “certainly survive the machinations of the BJP,” the party’s Chief Minister in neighbouring Chhattisgarh Bhupesh Baghel said on Thursday.

The defection of senior leader Jyotiraditya Scindia from the Congress to the BJP, accompanied by the announcement of at least 20 Congress MLAs that they have resigned from the Assembly, has thrown the government of Chief Minister Kamal Nath into a tailspin, but Mr. Baghel, a key strategist of the party, exuded confidence, talking to The Hindu in New Delhi.

Also read | Jyotiraditya Scindia’s defection a shameless act, says Ashok Gehlot | Scindia revolt a likely turning point in tussle within Congress

“The feedback that we have is that the MLAs who supposedly left the Congress feel deceived. They were taken on the pretext of bargaining for a Rajya Sabha ticket, and they feel betrayed by Mr. Scindia’s move. They are now unwilling to leave the Congress. They do not want to ruin their politics by joining the BJP. We have the numbers, and I can assure you that the Kamal Nath government will remain in office once this crisis blows over,” he said.

Fiercely attacking the BJP and Mr. Scindia, Mr. Baghel said both were trapped with each other now. “I can assure you that nobody is leaving the Congress with Scindiaji,” he said, adding that the former Congress leader betrayed the party. “He was Union Minister, Deputy Leader of the party in the Lok Sabha, AICC general secretary. But what has he achieved for the party? He was in charge of Uttar Pradesh — how many times did he go there? The party has only given him all and taken nothing from him. He has only taken from the party, and not given anything to the party. As long as you were in power, the party was good for you. You lost in the elections, and many others also lost in the elections. Suddenly the party has become very bad for you. The only thing we can make of this is that Scindiaji cannot live without power… He could not survive one year without power,” he said, pointing out that Congress workers in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have remained outside government for 15 years, and in Uttar Pradesh, “our workers have been out of power for decades.”

Also read | Congress seeks disqualification of six Madhya Pradesh Ministers loyal to Scindia for anti-party activities | A self-created political decline

Mr. Baghel recalled that Mr. Scindia’s father, late Madhavarao Scindia, had left the Congress but returned later. “Many big leaders have left the Congress but they have all come back.” Asked whether Mr. Scindia would return to the Congress in future, Mr. Baghel said: “You wait and watch. People have left the Congress with a lot of arrogance but returned chastened.”

The Chief Minister said the developments in Madhya Pradesh would have no impact in Chhattisgarh where his government enjoys a comfortable majority. “Even in Madhya Pradesh, his influence does not extend beyond Gwalior and Chambal. The BJP in Madhya Pradesh is in a fix with the joining of Mr. Scindia. Their main plank has been targeting Mr. Scindia in this region. Now that they have recruited him, what will they now say?” said Mr. Baghel.

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Printable version | Mar 6, 2021 11:30:48 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/kamal-nath-government-will-survive-bjp-machinations-bhupesh-baghel/article31053615.ece

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