The BJP secured a massive mandate in the Lok Sabha elections winning a massive 303 seats, and its coalition NDA winning 353 seats. Following the results that were declared on May 23, the Opposition seems to be utterly rocked as is evidenced by word of defection to the BJP from various parts of India and a stated discontent within the Congress owing to its shambolic performance of winning just 52 seats.
With the JD(S)-Congress coalition appearing in shambles, both the parties are scampering to hold the alliance intact and retain the rebel MLAs.
JD(S) state president in Karnataka H Vishwanath, on Tuesday, revealed that rebel MLA BC Patil will be offered ministership in a bid to stop the internal churn within the party. "All important and critical issues may be raised in the CLP meeting. We are going to put an end to all this quarrelling," he said. "... He (BC Patil) is going to become a minister...," Vishwanath added.
Republic TV's newsbreak on Monday had said that Congress was offering cabinet positions to dissenting MLAs as a part of it 'Save Karnataka' strategy.
Congress-JD(S) coalition government will allegedly be inducting the 3-4 rebelling MLAs on Wednesday into the Karnataka state cabinet in a bid to address their dissent. Sources further suggest that 5 Congress ministers and 3 JD(S) ministers may allegedly be resigning to accommodate the aforementioned dissenting MLAs.
In a massive setback to Mamata Banerjee and the Trinamool, leaders from the party have defected en masse to the BJP.
The BJP press briefing to announce the Trinamool leaders joining the New Delhi-based party witnessed the entire briefing area being filled to bursting. There were three West Bengal MLAs and around 50 councillors amongst the defectors. Subhranshu Roy and Tusharkanti Bhattacharjee are the Trinamool MLAs while CPM MLA Devendra Roy is also among those who have jumped ship
Amid BJP's demand for a floor test on May 21 following the exit polls which predicted the NDA coming back to power with a massive mandate, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Tuesday claimed that at least 10 Congress legislators were being lured by money and posts. "At least 10 MLAs told me that they are getting phone calls and are being lured by money and posts," Chief Minister Kamal Nath had said after meeting his party's Lok Sabha candidates.
The Chief Minister, however, had maintained that his legislators will not desert the Congress. "I have full faith in my MLAs," he said.
But following the results of the Lok Sabha polls which declared a sweeping majority for the NDA, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath has moved swiftly to keep his flock of Congress MLAs together to thwart any poaching attempt by a resurgent BJP.
Nath, whose five-month-old government is surviving on a wafer-thin majority, has asked each of his Cabinet colleagues to look after at least five legislators to check any desertion to the opposition camp, a Congress leader said on Monday. “Nath ji has asked each of his 27 Cabinet colleagues from his party to look after five legislators, the Congress leader told PTI. The ministers are going to act as the “guardian” to the legislators, he said.
The BJP last week wrote a letter to the governor, requesting her to convene a special session of the assembly for testing the Nath government’s strength on the floor of the House.
After Congress chief Rahul Gandhi gave Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot a tongue-lashing for putting his son above the party, several Rajasthan ministers and MLAs have demanded that accountability be fixed and action taken for the Lok Sabha poll debacle.
According to some of the leaders, who attended Saturday's Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting, Gandhi did a lot of "plain-speaking" in his analysis of the role of several party leaders while himself offering to quit as the party president.
Ticking-off Gehlot for camping in Jodhpur for his son Vaibhav's election, Gandhi said the chief minister spent days campaigning extensively for his son in Jodhpur and neglected the rest of the state. Reportedly, Gehlot had taken part in over 130 rallies and road shows, 93 of them in Jodhpur alone. His son, however, lost to the BJP's Gajendra Shekhawat.
Rajasthan Transport Minister Pratap Singh Khachariya said the CWC has given Gandhi full authority to fix the accountability and he will exercise that power. Bhanwarlal Meghwal, also demanded that accountability be immediately fixed for the defeat. "Whatever Rahul Gandhi said is right...Action should be taken against those people who are responsible for this defeat so that a message goes to the workers. The Congress workers are also very angry," he said.
Former Congress leader and Gujarat MLA from Radhanpur Alpesh Thakor on Tuesday claimed that over 15 MLAs from the grand old party will leave.
“It was our decision and the voice of my conscience that we don’t want to be here (in Congress). We want to work for our people and the poor with the help of the government. Wait and watch, more than 15 MLAs are leaving Congress, everyone is distressed. More than half of the MLAs are upset.
“My people are poor and backward. They need the support of the government. I was disturbed that I couldn’t give that to my people what I had intended to. My organisation voiced their opinion that we need not be there where we don’t have respect and there’s no talk of their rights," he said.
He had joined the Congress ahead of the Gujarat Legislative Assembly elections in 2017, but he quit the party in April before the Lok Sabha polls. He also said that Congress was full of sycophants and that party was bound to be defeated as it did not have any presence on the ground.
Irrigation Minister in Maharashtra government Girish Dattatray Mahajan on Tuesday said that Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil will join BJP on June 1. Patil met Mahajan at his residence on Tuesday, May 28.
Speaking to news agency ANI, Mahajan said: "After Narendra Modi's oath on May 30 as the Prime Minister of the country for the second time, Patil will join the BJP on June 1."
Following the embarrassing defeat of the Congress party in the state of Maharashtra, Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil said that he had clarified to the party at the time of resigning from the position of Leader of Opposition that he will not campaign for the party. He also said that after his son Sujay Vikhe Patil joined the BJP, he had started thinking about the prospect of joining the party. He added that now many of the workers from the BJP have also urged Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil to join the party.
Speaking to media after meeting with Girish Mahajan, he said: "No MPs are in my contact. Sai Baba will do everything right."