BHOPAL: In a major development on Thursday late night, Madhya Pradesh Assembly Speaker Narmada Prasad Prajapati accepted the resignations of remaining 16 rebel Congress MLAs who have been in Bengaluru since March 9.
With this resignation of the Jyotiraditya Scindia loyalists, all 22 MLAs who resigned on March 10 now stand accepted - consequently making the House's total strength fall to 206, where ruling Congress with 92 members and seven allied MLAs is now at least five short of simple majority figure of 104 seats, while BJP with 107 MLAs is three more than the simple majority.
While announcing acceptance of the 16 remaining resignations with effect from March 10, the Speaker said "In the wake of the Supreme Court directions on Thursday, the Legislature is following the Judiciary, while Constitution is silent."
When questioned about reconvening the Vidhan Sabha session on Friday to hold floor test as directed by the top court, the Speaker said "You'll get to see on Friday."
Meanwhile, hours after the Supreme Court directed the reconvening of the assembly session and holding of floor test by Kamal Nath government on Friday, the Vidhan Sabha didn't come out with Friday's business agenda till Thursday late night.
Though the Congress and BJP both issued whips to its legislators to be present in the House on Friday and vote as per party lines in the floor test, no business agenda was released by the MP Vidhan Sabha till late night.
Earlier, on Sunday evening, the floor test/trust vote (as directed by Governor for March 16) had not been included in the business agenda of Monday (March 16). On Monday, the Assembly was adjourned by Speaker Narmada Prasad Prajapati till March 26 without holding trust vote (as directed by Governor) after the Governor's Address.
However, it remains to be seen what happens on Friday in the Vidhan Sabha, particularly as the business agenda hasn't been released for the day.
Meanwhile, reacting to the Supreme Court's directions for holding floor test on Friday, CM Kamal Nath tweeted on Thursday evening, "We're studying every aspect of the SC directions and will decide after consulting with legal experts."
The CM has also convened a press conference at 12 noon on Friday at the CM House. Earlier, addressing the Congress MLAs on Thursday evening, Nath said that all Congress MLAs were united. Meanwhile, rumours are rife about the CM resigning or the Congress challenging the SC directives before larger bench on Friday.