Congress moves Supreme Court, accuses BJP of kidnapping MLAs, seeks release

Kamal Nath
Former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Kamal Nath

New Delhi, Marc 18: New twist in the Madhya Pradesh political crisis as the Congress leaders moved the Supreme Court accusing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of kidnapping and keeping in captivity its 16 MLAs. It also sought a direction for the release from of its MLAs from BJP’s captivity.

The application states that in the absence of these MLAs, there can be no vote of confidence.

The Speaker has also written a letter to Governor Lalji Tandon that resignations cannot be accepted as they have to be present in person. Other person cannot submit resignations on behalf of the MLAs as per rules of the HOuse Governor is assuming first that the Kamal Nath government is in minority.

This comes a day after the BJP approached the SC seeking a floor test in the state assembly. The plea was filed by former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan seeking immediate floor test in the state assembly. The court also issued notice to Speaker, CM Kamal Nath and Governor on a plea filed by the BJP seeking a floor test in the assembly within 12 hours.

The BJP petitioners had said that they are approaching the apex court as the respondents, Speaker and Madhya Pradesh CM have violated the constitutional principles and have deliberately and willfully defied the directions issued by the Governor on March 14, requiring the Chief Minister to prove his majority on the floor of Madhya Pradesh legislative assembly. “It is submitted by the petitioners that the leaders of the main opposition party namely the BJP also on March 14 had addressed a letter to the Madhya Pradesh Governor that the government was reduced into minority and attempts of horse-trading were being made,” the petition had said.

Kamal Nath has said that the Opposition can move no-confidence motion . The ongoing crisis in the state was sparked off by the exit of Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia.

The petition had said that in such a situation, the Governor should exercise his constitutional powers and direct the Chief Minister to prove his majority on the floor of the house. “Since the government appears to have lost the majority in the House and the Chief Minister had himself expressed willingness to conduct the floor test, the Governor, in the exercise of his constitutional powers directed the Chief Minister to conduct a floor test in the house and prove his majority on March 16, 2020, when the budget session of the assembly begins,” the petition had said.

The development comes as the Madhya Pradesh Assembly, which met on March 17 morning for the Budget session was adjourned immediately after the Governor’s address till March 26, in view of the coronavirus outbreak. Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Governor has written a letter to the CM directing him to conduct the floor test on March 17.

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