Madhya Pradesh: How Jyotiraditya Scindia Sets Path for The ‘Angry Young Men’ of Congress

Jyotiraditya Scindia quits Congress in Madhya Pradesh
Jyotiraditya Scindia being welcomed to BJP
Jyotiraditya Scindia quits Congress in Madhya Pradesh
Jyotiraditya Scindia being welcomed to BJP

The much talked about resignation by Jyotiraditya Scindia from the Congress has been considered a mammoth political development in Indian history. When Scindia left the Congress, a batch of 22 MLAs also left the Congress, which is regarded as the biggest defection record in three decades for Congress. Congress had managed to unseat the then CM of Madhya Pradesh Shivraj Singh Chouhan in the 2018 state assembly polls.

Since then a tug of war was going on between Scindia and another two old warhorses of Congress – CM Kamal Nath and Digvijay Singh. There has been some speculation of his quitting the Congress since over a year now. Remember, Jyotiraditya had joined the Congress after the death of his father in 2001.

Here are the events that led to Jyotiraditya Scindia quitting Congress.

Congress failed to accommodate Scindia and his ambitions

The triggers that led to Scindia quitting the Congress were Congress could not fulfil his ambitions. Jyotiraditya Scindia had signalled the party high command to make him the chief minister of the state. If it could not be fulfilled, then he was expecting the party would give him the post of Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president in Madhya Pradesh and a Rajya Sabha berth from the state. However, Congress could not fulfil any of his expectations.

Congress neglected Scindia

Scindia was being considered as one of Rahul Gandhi’s trustworthy aide, but the Congress party failed to respect his stature to stop him from crossing over the BJP. As per the sources close to Scindia, after losing the 2019 parliamentary elections from Guna, Kamal Nath and Digvijaya Singh had frozen out his presence from the decision-making scene in Madhya Pradesh.

Since Scindia was not in the good book of Kamal Nath, and his loyalty being primarily with the Gandhi’s, he offered Priyanka Gandhi the Rajya Sabha seat in the state rather than to Scindia. The young leader approached Sonia Gandhi but got a raw deal.

Political turmoil in MP

The neglect he felt within Congress led him to desire to start fresh his political career. Therefore, he revealed his anger publicly several times against the performance of Kamal Nath’s government in the state and warned the state government that he would come on the roads if the state government doesn’t keep its words in providing compensation to teachers. But Kamal Nath didn’t take it seriously. Scindia’s resignation has not only created a ruckus in the Congress camp albeit arising a political turmoil as well.

BJP strikes on the hot iron

The BJP took the advantage and approached him; the saffron party knows his potential as a leader. Modi-Shah duo had been wooing Scindia for a long time. A leading industrialist who was close to the three leaders played a middleman’s role. As the days of Rajya Sabha nomination is inching closer, the speculation is that apart from the Upper House seat, Scindia is almost sure to get a cabinet berth after joining the saffron party.

Rahul, not a shrewd politician

The saffron party is taking its steps cautiously as Scindia was a known trusted lieutenant of Rahul Gandhi. Still, some of the BJP leaders were speculating that Maharashtra type situation may be repeated. As Ajit Pawar, the nephew of Sharad Pawar shook hands with BJP and formed the government in Maharashtra for a blink of an eye period. A BJP leader said, “Yeh bhai Ajit Pawar toh nahi kar raha”. But Rahul’s political acumen is not like senior Pawar.

No dearth of young leadership

The young leaders in Congress are considered as a threat to Rahul. They are not given a chance to nurture and show their full potential. The grand old party had lost two general elections under Rahul’s tutelage. Uncertainty has also been gripping in the mind of Sachin Pilot in Rajasthan. Sachin played a stellar role in Congress victory in state assembly polls in 2018. Since then he is on the receiving end like Scindia.

History of Congress-BJP

Scindia’s family has a history of association with the Congress and the BJP. Jyotiraditya’s grandmother, Vijaya Raje Scindia popularly known as Rajmata, was associated with the Congress in the beginning but quit the party in 1967 and joined Bharatiya Jana Sangh. She was one of the founding members of the BJP. Jyotiraditya’s two aunts Vasundhara Raje and Yashodhara Raje, are well-known figures in the saffron party.

Vasundhara Raje was the chief minister of Rajasthan too. Jyotiraditya’s father, Madhavrao Scindia, had a close relationship with the Gandhi family. The Congress had expelled Madhavrao in 1996 when he resigned from the party. Later, he formed his own party named Madhya Pradesh Vikas Congress. Congress persuaded him again to return to the party in 1988.

How many MLAs left Congress with the Scindia camp

Jyotiraditya Scindia has the support of 22 MLAs, which is crucial for the falling of Kamal Nath’s government. Both the factions have kept their MLAs in different destinations. The BJP and the Congress have moved their MLAs to Gurgaon and Jaipur respectively.