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Madhya Pradesh crisis: SC notice to Kamal Nath on floor test, Congress seeks rebel access

NEW DELHI: The Madhya Pradesh unit of the Congress moved the Supreme Court on Tuesday seeking a direction to the Centre and the BJP-led Karnataka government to grant it access to its rebel MLAs allegedly being confined in Bengaluru. It also prayed its rebel MLAs be allowed to take part in the ongoing Budget session.

Earlier in the day, a bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud sought the Kamal Nath government’s response by Wednesday on a plea by former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan seeking an immediate floor test. The court directed the Kamal Nath government to respond to the notice by Wednesday 10:30 am.

Chouhan and nine other BJP lawmakers had moved the SC on Monday after Speaker N P Prajapati cited coronavirus concerns to adjourn the House till March 26 without taking the floor test, defying the directions of Governor Lalji Tandon. Meanwhile, another group of 16 rebel MLAs moved SC to get their resignations accepted by the Speaker. They said they are not under any pressure as claimed by the Kamal Nath government.

Senior advocate Maninder Singh, appearing for the rebel Congress MLAs, said the resignations of six lawmakers, out of 22, were accepted and there was no reason for not accepting the resignations of the 16 MLAs. “The rationale of this case is that a floor test is required,” senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi appearing for a BJP leader told the bench.

Cong line of attack

Trust vote can’t be held in the absence of MLAs representing 22 constituencies; Governor has pre-determined the Kamal Nath government has lost majority in the House