In yet another blow to the Congress ahead of the state bypolls, one more legislator in Madhya Pradesh resigned Thursday, taking to three the number of Congress MLAs who have resigned this month.
Pro-tem speaker Rameshwar Sharma accepted the resignation of Mandhata MLA Narayan Patel. His resignation has reduced the Congress strength in the 230-member assembly to 89.
Patel’s resignation left the Congress red in the face because it came within days of the Congress Legislature Party administering loyalty oath to party MLAs in Bhopal.
Earlier this month, Bada-Malhera MLA Pradyuman Singh Lodhi and Nepanagar MLA Sumitra Devi Kasdekar had resigned from the party.
The Congress lost power in Madhya Pradesh in March when 22 MLAs, loyalists of Jyotiraditya Scindia, quit the party. The BJP has 107 MLAs. The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has two legislators, Samajwadi Party one and four are independent.
Patel’s resignation will take to 27 the number of seats where by-elections will be held. Two vacancies were caused by the death of two legislators, including a BJP member, before March. Thus, the effective strength of the Assembly is now 203.