Veteran Congress leader Digvijay Singh has said that he tried to contact his party colleague Jyotiraditya Scindia but was unable to contact him because of the latter reportedly suffering from ‘swine flu.’ Singh’s statement came amidst reports that Scindia, currently believed to be in Delhi, was responsible for engineering a defection in the ruling party in Madhya Pradesh.
“We tried to contact Scindia Ji but it is being told that he is suffering from swine flu, so haven’t been able to speak to him,” news agency ANI quoted Singh as saying. The veteran Congress leader, however, warned that those disrespecting people’s mandate will have to face the voters’ wrath in the future.
He, however, hoped that, real supporters of the Congress will remain in the party. He said, “Jo sahi Congressi hain woh Congress mein rahega (Those who are real Congress supporters will remain in the Congress).”
The 15-month-old Congress government in Madhya Pradesh found itself in a spot of real bother after 17 MLAs including six ministers belonging to the ruling party flew to BJP-ruled Karnataka in a chartered plane. The mass desertions of Congress MLAs took place moments after former Congress MP Jyotiraditya Scindia reportedly met Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The late-night crisis prompted Kamal Nath to announce a cabinet rejig to win over the disgruntled elements within his party.
Kamal Nath has the support of 120 MLAs including 114 from his own party. He needs the support of 116 for an absolute majority in the Madhya Pradesh assembly. If 18 MLAs decide to not return to the party, then the Congress will lose another state after Karnataka.
Monday’s development has caused considerable grief to the Congress leadership. There are reports that Scindia could well be on his way to join the BJP. His aunt Vasundhara Raje and grandmother Vijaya Raje Scindia have long been associated with the BJP.