The pious occasion of Holi was a day of bad news and despair for the Congress party. Long term MP and former union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia bid the Congress goodbye after leading an exodus of 22 Madhya Pradesh MLAs from the Kamal Nath-government. Murmurs of discontent and rebellion against the Congress high command among the young guns took tangible shape.
On such a day, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi was spotted by Republic TV at the plush Meherchand restaurant in the national capital. Gandhi was seen relaxed, nonplussed and smiling. He was in this Lodhi Road cafe with friends where he is a frequent visitor. Visuals show the Gandhi scion pose for photos with people before leaving the venue without any comment.
After two days of heavy political drama, the former Guna MP formally submitted his resignation to Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday, as all talks of mediation failed. Jyotiraditya Scindia resigned from the party soon after he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the latter's residence along with former BJP party chief Amit Shah.
Moreover, 22 MLAs who support him have tendered their resignation from their Bengaluru resorts — where they have been holed up for the past few days. Scindia himself is likely to join the BJP on 12 March and will also allegedly file for the Rajya Sabha nomination on 13 March.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath also dissolved his cabinet on Monday, making 20 ministers resign overnight at an apparent cabinet rejig attempt. However, it failed and all six rebel cabinet ministers, who are loyal to Scindia, have been expelled. Sources said that to challenge the Kamal Nath-led government, BJP will demand a floor test in Madhya Pradesh Assembly on March 16. The Rajya Sabha election is to be held on March 26.
Speaking to Republic TV, the embattles CM said, "We are very confident. We will pass the floor test. Why would Scindia leaving impact us? Those who have been held captive, are in touch. Why they are being to taken to Banglore? There is nothing to worry.