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Podcast: In Focus | Jyotiraditya Scindia joins the BJP

Tunia Cherian | Updated on March 13, 2020 Published on March 13, 2020

Putting an end to the growing speculation about his imminent exit from the Congress, Jyotiraditya Scindia this week parted ways with the Congress to throw in his lot with the BJP.

As he put it in his resignation letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, the path to his eventual exit from the the Grand Old Party had been drawing itself out for the last one year.

So what led to the the split? The reasons for his disaffection with the Congress are not far to seek. Kamal Nath'a appointment as Chief Minister in December 2018 and his unsuccessful attempts to win a Rajya Sabha nomination from the state, led to his growing discontent within the party.

Scindia's entry will be a shot-in-the-arm for BJP, with some within the party calling it a ghar vapsi for the Gwalior royal, whose grandmother was a founding member of the Jan Sangh. His aunts Vasundhara Raje and Yashodhara Raje Scindia are senior leaders in the party. Vasundhara Raje is also a former Chief Minister of Rajasthan.

In what could be seen as an immediate reward for his joining forces with it, the BJP has given Scindia a ticket to the Rajya Sabha from Madhya Pradesh.

But where does Scindia's exit from the Congress, leave the party with which he was associated for 18 years. The immediate impact would be on the Madhya Pradesh

government, where the party could end up in a minority, with 22 MLAs loyal to Scindia resigning from the Legislative Assembly. The horse-trading that immediately follows

such a switching of camps has begun in the state, where both the Congress and the BJP are herding their MLAs together in resorts.

The BJP is likely to move a no-confidence motion against the Kamal Nath government as early as Monday. Nath has expressed his readiness to hold the floor test during the budget session beginning from March 16.

For the Congress, this should be a period of introspection. The call for inner party democracy and greater collaboration within the party is likely to grow louder.

 It will also be interesting to see how Scindia fares in the BJP. Will his new party afford him the space to follow his dreams?

Published on March 13, 2020