The 22 Congress MLAs who joined the BJP in March last year did so to save Madhya Pradesh which was being "ruined" by the Kamal Nath government in place at the time, the latter's state unit chief VD Sharma said on Saturday.
The rebellion by 22 MLAs, many of them loyalists of Congressman-turned Rajya Sabha MP Jyotiraditya Scindia, led to the fall of the Nath government.
"The Congress leaders got wedded to the saffron culture and joined the BJP. They did so to save MP. During 15 months of Congress rule, the state was ruined," Sharma told reporters on the sidelines of his party's two-day training session here.
He said these legislators joined the BJP after being swayed by the public-centric welfare programmes of the party's governments in the state under Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
He said the public had endorsed these leaders, who had to face bypolls after quitting the MP Assembly, by voting for them.