It has been almost three months since the BJP removed the Kamal Nath led Congress government from Madhya Pradesh and came to power, but the Cabinet of the state hadn’t been fully formed so far.
The CM of the state Shivraj Singh Chouhan now initiated the process of expanded his Cabinet by inducting in it 28 new members, which includes 16 BJP legislators and 12 former Congress legislators.
The larger portion of those who have been inducted from the former Congress include nine loyalists of Jyotiraditya Scindia, due to whose rebellion the 12 month old Kamalnath led Congress government had to be brought down in the state in the month of March.
Two other Scindia loyalists were already part of the Chouhan team in the state.
In total, 14 of the 22 Congress who were found camping in Bengaluru to makes sure that the Congress government fell, they are now ministers in Chouhan’s Cabinet. Ten of them are now Cabinet ministers and four of them are ministers of state.
The new Shivraj Sing Chouhan Cabinet will now have 34 ministers, and this leaves little or no scope for further expansion. It is believed that this expansion has been dictated by the crucial bye-election for 24 seats that will determine the stability of the BJP led government, which has already completed 100 days in power in the state.
Most of these seats fall in the Gwalior-Chambal region, a place where the Scindias enjoy influence. The bye-elections will have to be faced by 22 former Congress legislators as ministers. CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan had alone taken the oath on March 23, a night before the first lockdown had been announced by PM Modi.
He worked alone until April 21, inducting five ministers, including two who were loyalists of Scindia. The party faced immense dilemma on the composition of the Cabinet because the challenge was to adjust BJP leaders including those who had been ministers in the past and also add in Scindia supports who will face bye-elections very soon.
It is to be noted that 22 MLAs from the Congress had resigned and joined the BJP earlier this year.