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Madhya Pradesh crisis HIGHLIGHTS: Governor asks CM Kamal Nath to hold floor test tomorrow

Madhya Pradesh Crisis HIGHLIGHTS: The Assembly was adjourned after till March 26 without the trust vote proceedings. In a brief address to the Assembly, Governor Lalji Tandon advised everyone in the House to uphold law so that the “dignity of Madhya Pradesh remains protected.”

By: Express Web Desk | Bhopal, New Delhi |
Updated: March 17, 2020 9:09:45 am
Madhya Pradesh crisis Live News Updates: BJP MLAs met Governor Lalji Tandon today.

Madhya Pradesh crisis HIGHLIGHTS: Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon has asked Chief Minister Kamal to conduct a floor test tomorrow, failing to which it would be considered that the present government lacks majority in the state assembly.

Follow live updates on the Madhya Pradesh crisis

Also, the BJP moved the Supreme Court oafter the much-anticipated floor test in Madhya Pradesh did not take place following the adjournment of the Assembly by Speaker NP Prajapati over the coronavirus pandemic. The BJP also submitted a letter and paraded 106 MLAs before Governor Lalji Tandon. Stating that while Congress has only 92 members, Shivraj Singh Chouhan accused the chief minister of running away from the battlefield. Citing coronavirus outbreak, Speaker adjourned the House today.

Earlier this morning, in a brief address to the Assembly, Governor Tandon advised everyone in the House to uphold the law so that the “dignity of Madhya Pradesh remains protected.” He was received by CM Kamal Nath outside the House who was seen carrying a mask. While the Speaker and Congress legislators were seen sporting masks, BJP MLAs were not wearing them.

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After the Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned today till March 26, the BJP has moved Supreme Court over holding floor test. Follow HIGHLIGHTS:

18:52 (IST)16 Mar 2020
From BJP approaching SC to Guv asking for floor, here's all that happened today

The BJP moved the Supreme Court on Monday after the much-anticipated floor test in Madhya Pradesh did not take place following the adjournment of the Assembly by Speaker NP Prajapati over the coronavirus pandemic.

The top court will hear the matter on Tuesday after a petition was filed by former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and nine other MLAs demanding that the Kamal Nath-led Congress government face a trust vote within 12 hours. READ MORE

17:21 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Governor Lalji Tandon asks CM Kamal Nath to hold floor test tomorrow

Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon wrote a letter to Chief Minister Kamal Nath Monday, asking him to conduct a floor test tomorrow, failing to which it would be considered that the present government lacks majority in the state. 

15:53 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Digvijay Singh meets MP Governor, says its 'courtesy' visit

Amid ongoing political tussle in Madhya Pradesh, senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh on Monday met state Governor Lalji Tandon, and termed it as a "courtesy" visit. Talking to reporters after meeting the governor, Singh said he had known Tandon for the last many years and that they did not discuss politics.

Madhya Pradesh has been in a political turmoil since last Tuesday after 22 MLAs of the ruling Congress resigned. They are believed to be the loyalists of rebel Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia, who has since joined the BJP. The governor had on Saturday night directed Chief Minister Kamal Nath to hold a floor test on the first day of the Budget session beginning on Monday in view of the resignations. (PTI)

15:24 (IST)16 Mar 2020
BJP holding Cong MLAs in captivity, floor test not possible: CM Kamal Nath

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath on Monday wrote to state Governor Lalji Tandon stating that holding of a floor test in the Assembly would have been "undemocratic and unconstitutional" in view of some MLAs of the Congress being held in "captivity" by the BJP with the help of the Karnataka Police. The Legislative Assembly was adjourned till March 26 on the first day of the Budget session on Monday amid the concern raised by the state government over coronavirus infection, without holding a floor test as demanded by the BJP.

"I would like you to recall that when I met you on March 13, 2020, I had brought to your notice that the BJP has kept many Congress MLAs as captive under the control of Karnataka Police and they were forced to give different types of statements. "I have clarified that in such a situation holding any floor test has no meaning and it will be undemocratic and unconstitutional," Nath stated in his six-page letter dated March 16.

"The floor test will be meaningful only when all the MLAs are free from captivity and totally free from all kind of pressure," he added. (PTI)

14:48 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Maihar MLA Narayan Tripathi not on BJP list, visits CM Kamal Nath

BJP MLA from Maihar Narayan Tripathi, one of the MLAs who voted with the ruling Congress party in Assembly on a bill in July 2019, was not among the leaders paraded before the Governor. His name is not on the list of BJP leaders submitted to the Governor.

Instead, Tripathi visited the CM house claiming that he was there to demand that Maihar be declared a district. He had made the same demand when he met the CM at midnight a few days ago! 

14:01 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Kamal Nath govt in minority, delay in holding floor test will encourage horse trading: BJP's plea in SC

The BJP's plea, mentioned before the mentioning officer of the apex court for urgent hearing, said the Speaker, the Chief Minister and the Principal Secretary of the Assembly be directed to "hold the floor test in the Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly within 12 hours of the passing of the order by this court and as directions...issued by Governor".

"The government led by Chief Minister Kamal Nath has been reduced to minority. It has no moral legal, democratic or constitutional rights to remain in power even for a single day. "All possible attempts are being made by the Chief Minister to convert his minority government into majority by giving all possible threats, allurements to the members of Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha. The horse trading is at its peak. Therefore, it is essential that the floor test is conducted on March 16 itself as already directed by Governor so that it becomes absolutely clear as to whether the chief minister continues to enjoy the confidence of the majority of the Madhya Pradesh Vidhan Sabha". It said any deferment of the floor test will further encourage "horse trading" and will be in utter violation of the directions issued by the Governor, law laid down by this court and the spirit and basic structure of the Constitution of india.

13:32 (IST)16 Mar 2020
BJP parades 106 MLAs before Guv, demand floor test

The BJP leaders led by Shivraj Singh Chouhan reached Raj Bhavan some time back. The party paraded 106 MLAs before the Governor and submitted a letter with signatures. Guv Tandon asked them if they had come voluntarily to which they said yes while raising their hands. The Governor said he had given certain directions (floor test) and that they should have been followed. Former CM and MLA Shivaraj Singh Chouhan said the party paraded it's MLAs before the governor because the government was in minority. "The govt has lost majority and has no right to remain in power."

13:29 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Can Governor order Speaker?

It has been proven time and again that any instruction issued to the Speaker by the Governor is not binding. The Governor may only order the Chief Minister, but not the Speaker of the house. However, the House must resume and pass the state budget before the end of the financial year as it will otherwise be difficult for the state to function from April.

But a senior minister told The Indian Express that the Supreme Court has made it clear in the Karnataka issue that the resignation should be accepted. “For the BJP, it is a comfortable position — if the resignation is accepted, the MLAs can’t vote, if it’s not, they will vote against their party whip,” the minister said, adding that the BJP was going to gain two seats.

13:09 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Digvijaya Singh holds 'courtesy' meet with Guv; BJP leaders reach Raj Bhavan

Amid the political crisis in Madhya Pradesh, Congress leader Digvijaya Singh visited Governor Lalji Tandon. "I share a very good relationship with the Governor. It was a courtesy meet and we did not discuss politics," he said. Meanwhile, a group of BJP leader led by Shivraj Singh Chouhan also reached Raj Bhavan

13:02 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Technical hurdles in Madhya Pradesh will be cleared, govt to be formed soon: BJP leader

Talking to The Indian Express, a BJP leader said that the party is confident that "all technical hurdles” will be cleared in Madhya Pradesh and a government will be in place soon. It may take a day or sometimes a week for the legal issues to be cleared,” said a top source in the BJP. According to the senior leader in the party, the speaker cannot “insist that the MLAs should work with one leader if they don’t want to.”

“We are just waiting to see how far they (the Congress and Kamal Nath) will go. Let’s see,” he said when asked about the party approaching the Supreme Court for the floor test as well as on the issue of resignation of the MLAs. “The MLAs have made it clear that they are not working with the Congress or the Chief Minister” he pointed out.

The leader said the Supreme Court verdicts in the past are clear on what should be done with the resignation of MLAs. “There are laid out rules,” he said. The BJP he said will adopt all “democratic tools and procedures” to see that a government with majority support in place in Madhya Pradesh. A senior minister told The Indian Express that the Supreme Court has made it clear in the Karnataka issue that the resignation should be accepted.

12:50 (IST)16 Mar 2020
BJP moves SC over Madhya Pradesh floor test

Minutes after the Assembly was adjourned, the BJP moved the Supreme Court demanding a trust vote, reported news agency ANI. A group of MLA led by Shivraj Singh Chouhan have also reached Raj Bhavan

12:34 (IST)16 Mar 2020
BJP should bring no-confidence motion, will prove our majority: Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath

" If the BJP thinks it has the numbers it should bring a no-confidence motion. Nobody has stopped it from bringing the motion. We will prove our majority," Chief Minister Kamal Nath said. 

12:21 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Directing floor test outside purview of Governor's rights: CM Kamal Nath

Hours before the session of the Madhya Pradesh Assembly began on Monday, Chief Minister Kamal Nath wrote a letter to Governor Lalji Tandon saying that his directive to hold a floor test was out of the purview of his constitutional rights and that it "does not lie within the domain of the Governor to interfere with the functions of the Speaker".

In his letter, Kamal Nath claimed that some of his MLAs are being held hostage in Karnataka and says are being forced to make video statements. He added a floor test could be conducted when all the MLAs are "free from coercion and not under any pressure".

11:51 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Madhya Pradesh Assembly adjourned till March 26

Soon after Governor Lalji Tandon's address, Madhya Pradesh Assembly was adjourned till March 26. No trust vote proceedings were held. Before leaving the House, the governor urged the legislators to follow the Constitutional traditions, maintain dignity of democracy and act peacefully in the current situation prevailing in the state.

11:24 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Madhya Pradesh floor test: Governor address House, has an advise for MLAs

In a brief address to the Assembly, Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon advised the MLAs to uphold the law. “All must follow the rules under the Constitution so that dignity of Madhya Pradesh remains protected,” the Governor said.

11:18 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Amid suspense over floor test, CM Kamal Nath writes to Guv

CM Kamal Nath writes to Governor Lalji Tandon today stating, "Hope due procedure and Constitution will be followed", as suspense over floor test continues, news agency ANI reported

11:15 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Madhya Pradesh floor test: CM Kamal Nath receives Governor Lalji Tandon

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister received Governor Lalji Tandon outside the Madhya Pradesh Assembly. Many MLAs including the chief minister were seen sporting masks in wake of the coronavirus spread

11:13 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Madhya Pradesh floor test: Quick profile of 22 rebel MLAs

Most of the 22 MLAs who have resigned from the Assembly, putting the Kamal Nath government in danger, represent seats in and around the Gwalior region and swear allegiance to Jyotiraditya Scindia. Some of them have also cited their resentment with the government, accusing it of ignoring their concerns and overlooking them for ministerial berths. A quick profile of the 22 leaders who are camping in Bengaluru 

11:00 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Madhya Pradesh floor test: Congress, BJP MLAs arrive at Madhya Pradesh Assembly

Ahead of the Budget Session, Congress and BJP MLAs arrived at Madhya Pradesh Assembly. All eyes are now on Speaker as he decides whether to hold floor test today

10:42 (IST)16 Mar 2020
Uncertainty over Madhya Pradesh floor test continues

In case you are just joining us, it's a crucial day in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly. The Budget Session will begin at 11 am with the customary address by Governor. There is uncertainty on whether Speaker will conduct the floor test today. Chief Minister Kamal Nath, BJP MLAs and Congress MLAs are on their way to the Assembly.

The political drama in Madhya Pradesh Monday shits to the Assembly as there was no clarity if the floor test ordered by the Governor would take place today.

The resignation of the 22 MLAs, most of them Jyotiraditya Scindia's loyalists, last week has brought the Kamal Nath government on the brink of collapse. The Speaker has so far accepted resignations of six of the 22 MLAs, bringing down the effective strength of the House to 222 and the new majority mark at 112. The opposition BJP has 107 MLAs, while Congress has 108.

Late Sunday night, CM Kamal Nath met Governor Lalji Tandon who said that he was convinced that the Congress government was in minority and to “protect democratic principles’’, the CM must win the trust of the House immediately after the Governor’s address on Monday. After the meeting, Kamal Nath told reporters that the Speaker would take a call on voting. Speaker Prajapati, however, said he is more "concerned" about the spread of novel coronavirus. The Speaker’s reply came amid speculation that the Congress government would use the infection spread to avoid or postpone the trust vote.

Late on Saturday, Governor Lalji Tandon had directed the Congress government to prove its majority during the Budget session which is scheduled to begin today. The Governor said the test would take place immediately after his address in the House. The voting would take place via division and the proceedings would be recorded by an independent videographer, he said. The Governor also said no other business would take place in the Assembly.

Speaker N P Prajapati on Sunday, however, dubbed as “hypothetical” a question on whether the trust vote would take place on Monday, and added he would reveal only on Monday if the Governor has the power to order a floor test. “I am more concerned about the spread of coronavirus,’’ he said, after asserting, “Kalpanik sawal hai, trust vote hoga ki nahi (Whether the trust vote will happen or not is a hypothetical question). Only tomorrow will I spell out whether the Governor can order a floor test.’’

The Congress alleges that these 22 MLAs who submitted their resignations are being held "captive" by the BJP.

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