Kamal Nath stakes claim to form govt in Madhya Pradesh: A Congress delegation under the leadership of Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia met Madhya Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel at 12 noon on Wednesday to stake claim to form a government in the state. The Congress leaders submitted a letter to the governor in this regard. If all goes well, the party will be able to dislodge 15 years of BJP rule in the state where it had been out of power since 2003. According to the latest data on election results and leads on early Wednesday, the Congress secured 114 seats in the 230-member state Assembly. However, Congress coordinator Narendra Saluja on Wednesday claimed the party has the support of 122 MLAs and the situation is clear to form the government.

State Congress leader Kamal Nath has emerged as the front-runner for the post of Madhya Pradesh chief minister. A formal announcement will be made at 5 pm after a party meeting. The party had two strong contenders – Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia – for the top post. However, speculations were rife with a majority believing that member Kamal Nath will be made Madhya Pradesh’s next CM. According to reports, Kamal Nath, who is a nine-time Lok Sabha MP from Chhindwara, has already declared victory and congratulated the new ministers at Congress office in Bhopal. He paid a courtesy visit to former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan today. At 3 pm Nath will brief the media about the government formation in Madhya Pradesh.

Shobha Oza, the chief spokesperson of Congress in MP said there will be a meeting of party MLAs at 4 pm. AK Antony is coming as an observer and after it and the party leaders will put in a word with Rahul Gandhi, she added.

The Congress move comes after, Shivraj Singh Chouhan told reporters that the BJP will not stake claim to form a government in the state as it did not get a clear majority. On Wednesday, Shivraj Singh Chouhan arrived at the Raj Bhawan and resigned from the post of chief minister. After tendering his resignation letter, Chouhan said Ab mein mukt hoon (I am free now). Congratulating Congress leader Kamal Nath for the victory, the BJP leader and former Madhya Pradesh CM also took the onus of his party’s defeat on himself.

Meanwhile, senior Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia said that he will abide by the decision taken by party president Rahul Gandhi and other senior leaders. On being questioned who will become the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, the senior Congress leader had said that ‘Let us not put the cart before the horse’.

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