10 BJP leaders resign as MPs after win in state elections
Lok Sabha MP from Rajasthan, Baba Balaknath, and Union minister of state for tribal affairs Renuka Singh, who won from Chhattisgarh, are yet to submit their resignations
Ten Bharatiya Janata Party lawmakers, including two Union ministers, who won assembly seats in the Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh elections resigned from Parliament on Wednesday, amid suspense over the party’s choice of chief minister in each state.
With an eye on improving its electoral prospects, the BJP fielded four Union ministers and several other parliamentarians in the state polls, the results of which were declared on Sunday.
The party retained power in Madhya Pradesh, winning 163 of the 230 seats, and ousted the Congress from Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, winning 115 of 200 and 54 of 90 constituencies, respectively. The 10 MPs submitted their resignation after calling on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president JP Nadda. The party president accompanied them to the Speaker’s office where nine MPs submitted their resignation letters. The tenth MP, Kirori Lal Meena, submitted his resignation to Rajya Sabha chairman.
While there is speculation that the ministers could be in the running for the top post in Madhya Pradesh and at least two of the lawmakers are being considered for the CM’s post in Rajasthan, the party leadership has maintained a stoic silence on the issue. “There have been a couple of meetings between PM Modi, (home minister) Amit Shah and Nadda on the issue. The announcement will be made following a meeting of the parliamentary board and legislative party meetings in the respective states expected over the weekend,” said a party functionary. Later in the evening, a meeting took place between PM Modi and Shah, the details of which were not shared.
The BJP will hold its parliamentary party meeting on Thursday in the Parliament House complex. PM Modi along with all the party MPs will be present during the meeting.
The lawmakers who resigned are Narendra Singh Tomar, Prahlad Patel, Rakesh Singh, Uday Pratap Singh, and Riti Pathak from Madhya Pradesh; Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Diya Kumari, Kirori Lal Meena (Rajya Sabha MP) from Rajasthan; and Arun Sao and Gomti Sai from Chhattisgarh.
Lok Sabha MP from Rajasthan, Baba Balaknath, and Union minister of state for tribal affairs Renuka Singh, who won from Chhattisgarh, are yet to submit their resignations.
Tomar holds the agriculture portfolio while Prahlad Patel is the minister of state for food processing and Jal Shakti while Singh is the MoS for tribal affairs. Faggan Singh Kulaste, minister of state for steel and rural development, the fourth minister to have been fielded by the BJP in the state elections, could not win the assembly seat.
HT reported on Monday that these MPs will submit their resignations and that there was speculation about a possible rejig in the Union council of ministers with three ministers moving to the states.
On whether the party will consider fresh faces for the three CM posts, given the push for a generational shift and encouraging a new line of leaders, the functionary cited above said, “That issue is there too... it will also be considered. However, there is a section that feels that a winning combination should not be disturbed. In MP, Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s schemes for women have had an impact as strong as PM Modi’s guarantees.” While there have been reports of the state unit in Chhattisgarh pushing for the appointment of an OBC or tribal leader, in Rajasthan, a section of legislators is said to have thrown their lot behind Vasundhara Raje. According to a party functionary, Raje has been asked to come to Delhi. Senior party leaders also questioned her about the meeting with legislators, which was perceived as a show of strength.