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2-min read

'From Behind the Curtain': Minister Says Digvijaya Singh, Not CM Kamal Nath, is Running MP Govt

Madhya Pradesh forest minister Umang Singhar’s outburst came after Digvijaya Singh shot off letter to all 28 ministers, seeking report on action taken on his recommendations.


Updated:September 2, 2019, 1:06 PM IST
'From Behind the Curtain': Minister Says Digvijaya Singh, Not CM Kamal Nath, is Running MP Govt
File photo of senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh and Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath. (PTI)

Bhopal: Laying bare the worsening infighting within the Madhya Pradesh Congress, a minister in the Kamal Nath cabinet has lashed out at senior party leader Digvijaya Singh for allegedly running the state government via proxy.

Madhya Pradesh forest minister Umang Singhar’s outburst came after Singh reportedly shot off letter to all 28 ministers in the government, seeking report on action taken on his previous letters recommending certain transfers.

“All I can say about honourable Digvijaya Singh is that he’s running the government from behind the curtains. Everyone, including the people of Madhya Pradesh as well as Congress workers, know this. When he’s actually running the government, there is no need for him to write letters to ministers for getting various works done,” said Singhar, a tribal strongman who represents Gandhwani in the Assembly.

In his letter, Singh had also urged ministers to give him an appointment by August 31 so he could know what action has been taken on his recommendations.

"I had forwarded the applications related to various subjects, including the transfer between January and August 15, 2019, for necessary action. I had also requested you by writing separate letters to inform me about the action taken on my letters and if action was not possible, in any of these cases. To know about the action taken on the above letters sent by me, I want to meet you before August 31, 2019." Singh's letter read.

Singhar’s party and cabinet colleague Govind Rajput, however, had a different take on Singh’s letter. "Digvijay Singh ji is a senior party leader and former chief minister of the state. What's wrong if he wanted to know about action taken on his letters? Not only Digvijaya Singh ji, but all leaders and ministers want to know about the action taken on the letters written by them," news agency PTI quoted the state minister for transport and revenue as saying.

The statements fuel speculation of a three-way infighting within the Congress over the post of the state unit chief between the supporters of Kamal Nath, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Digvijaya Singh.

Singh’s letter had also invoked sharp reactions from the opposition BJP, which questioned who the “real boss” was.

“The language of the letter shows that he wanted the ministers to be responsible for him and not to the leaders sitting in the government. The officials are also confused about who is the actual chief minister? This shows ministers are being asked by a party leader to be accountable to him,” state BJP spokesperson Rajnish Agrawal said.

During Lok Sabha poll campaigning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh was in shambles as more than one person was wielding the power of chief ministership.

BJP leaders like Amit Shah and Shivraj Singh Chouhan have also made such allegations routinely.

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| Edited by: Nitya Thirumalai
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