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2-min read

Cornered by Allies, Partymen Over Cabinet Berths in MP, Congress Turns to ‘Troubleshooter’ Digvijaya For Help

Congress leader Digvijaya Singh left for New Delhi on Thursday evening to consult the party high command over the political trouble in MP.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:December 28, 2018, 3:13 PM IST
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Cornered by Allies, Partymen Over Cabinet Berths in MP, Congress Turns to ‘Troubleshooter’ Digvijaya For Help
File photo of Congress leader Digvijaya Singh.
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Bhopal: The newly-elected Kamal Nath government is finding it hard to rein in not just the sulking allies but even its own senior MLAs, who are fuming over their exclusion from the Madhya Pradesh cabinet.

Among the Congress MLAs, it is Aindal Singh Kansana who is leading the charge with his supporters and they even blocked the national highway in Morena in protest when the 29-member cabinet of CM Kamal Nath was sworn in on December 25.

Some of Kansana’s staunch supporters, along with Sumawali block head Madan Sharma, had resigned from the party over the treatment meted out to Kansana. Currently his supporters are camping in New Delhi, demanding ministerial berth for their leader.

Senior Congress leader Bisahulal Singh from Anuppur district — where the Congress won all three seats in the assembly polls — was reportedly in tears when met fellow colleague Digvijaya Singh after the oath-ceremony. Another former minister KP Singh has also got in touch with the party high command over his exclusion from the cabinet.

In a veiled threat to Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia, one of the Singh’s supporters advised him not to pass through Pichhore constituency which is represented by Singh.
Lone Sikh MLA Hardeep Singh Dang, also the single Congress MLA Mandsaur, is also upset over having been denied a ministerial berth.

Then there is Jai Adivasi Yuva Shakti (JAYS) national convener and Manwar MLA Dr Hiralal Alawa, who had made his desire for ministerial berth be known much before the cabinet was sworn in. Alawa has reportedly sought an appointment from Congress president Rahul Gandhi over his exclusion.

Alawa has termed the decision an insult to the tribal community which helped the party return to power.

Sanjay Sharma, a three-time MLA from Tendukheda who had joined Congress ahead of assembly polls, has claimed that he was promised a ministerial berth and won’t accept the post of parliamentary secretary. Burhanpur MLA Surendra Singh Thakur, who had rebelled against the Congress to fight and contest poll from Burhanpur, too, has warned the party over his exclusion.

Among the allies, while the BSP has extended support to the Congress from outside, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav lashed out at the party for denying his lone MLA space in the Kamal Nath cabinet.

Sensing big trouble, Congress troubleshooter Digvijaya Singh has swung into action. He left for New Delhi on Thursday evening to consult the high command over the political trouble in MP.

“Kamal Nath ji respects Akhilesh Yadav and if he had wished, SP MLA would have been included in the cabinet,” Singh said before leaving for the national capital. On Kansana’s rebellion, the former MP chief minister said he has spoken to him and things are under control.
The party had made it clear that no first-timer would be offered ministerial berth.

Facing resentment from all corners, the MP government is yet to allocate portfolios to the newly-sworn in ministers. With the constitutional norm in effect that any assembly could have at most 15 per cent MLAs appointed as ministers, the MP government could have 34 ministers and five berths in the cabinet are still lying vacant.
| Edited by: Divya Kapoor
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