NEW DELHI: The power struggle within the Madhya Pradesh Congress has taken a new twist with the name of the newly elected MLA and veteran tribal leader Kantilal Bhuria cropping up for the state chief's post.
As per sources, former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Digvijay Singh had met senior leader Ahmed Patel last week to push for the name of Bhuria, who recently won the Jhabua Assembly bypoll. Bhuria, a former Union Minister, is said to be close to Digvijay Singh.
Senior minister in the Kamal Nath government, Sajjan Singh Verma, has openly advocated the name of Bhuria for the Madhya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) President's post.
Sensing the developments, Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia has met Deepak Babaria, the state in-charge of the party. After the meeting, any decision with regard to the appointment of the new MPCC chief has been put off for now.
Scindia had resigned from the post of General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee (AICC), which, however, has not been accepted yet. He has been spending more time in his home state of Madhya Pradesh. His close aides such as Govind Singh Rajput and Umang Singhar have been propagating his name for the MPCC chief's post.
The Congress has been trying to placate Scindia by including him in important party committees, such as screening committee chairman for Maharashtra. Scindia has also been included in the party delegation, which is going to visit the Kartarpur Corridor.
A close aide of Scindia insisted that he should be made the President of the state Congress as a compensation for not being made the Chief Minister. Scindia had refused to become Kamal Nath's deputy.
The history of infighting in the Congress' Madhya Pradesh unit is generations old. The rift between Digvijay Singh and the Scindias started when the late Madhavrao Scindia, who was close to the party's top leadership in Delhi, tried to dislodge Digvijay Singh, but could not succeed, said a party insider.
Interestingly, Raghopur, the former princely state of Digvijay Singh's ancestors, comes under the Maharaja of Gwalior -- the Scindias -- but both are bete noire in politics.
The Madhya Pradesh government is surviving on a razor thin majority, so the party high command is desisting from taking any major step in order to avoid the risk of antagonising any of its factions.