Kamal Nath and Jitu Patwari
Kamal Nath and Jitu Patwari

Congress leader Kamal Nath on Tuesday claimed "bargaining", possibly a reference to his MLAs being lured to switch sides, to bring down his government in Madhya Pradesh started four months before it actually fell in March this year.

Addressing a bypoll rally in Gwalior, the state Congress president said his mistake was that he "did not bargain for the government as I have always believed in clean politics".

"There was bargain going on for four months before the fall of the Congress government (in March)," Nath said.

The former chief minister said Babasaheb Ambedkar, the chief architect of the Constitution, would never have imagined there would be bypolls for 28 seats, and not one or two, in a 230-member House due to the politics of "horse-trading and bargaining".

The 15-month-old Nath government fell in March after 22 Congress MLAs resigned from the Assembly and the party, and later joined the BJP, which came to power under Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

Hitting back, MP BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal said in Bhopal that Nath's statement was a "face-saving act" as he had failed to keep his party legislators together when in power.

"He failed in the role given by his party. His party leadership is not happy with him. Most MLAs who resigned and joined the BJP are young, their average age is 45 years. They don't see a political future in the Congress," Agrawal said.

Counting of votes will take place on November 10.

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Free Press Journal