BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh Governor Lalji Tandon on Friday accepted the resignation of Chief Minister Kamal Nath.
Nath had submitted his resignation to the governor at the Raj Bhawan here around 1 pm on Friday.
"The governor accepted the resignation of Kamal Nath and asked him to continue as the caretaker chief minister till the new CM takes charge," a Raj Bhawan official told PTI.
Nath's move of stepping down as the CM came a day after the Supreme Court directed that a floor test be conducted in Madhya Pradesh Assembly to prove that the Congress government led by him enjoys a majority in the House following the rebellion by 22 MLAs of his party.
The announcement comes a few hours after the Assembly Speaker accepted resignations of remaining 16 rebel Congress MLAs, bringing his 15-months-old government into a minority.
BJP leader Jyotiraditya Scindia termed Chief Minister Kamal Nath's resignation as people's victory in Madhya Pradesh.
The former Congress MP, whose exit from that party led to the fall of the Kamal Nath government, said he has always believed that politics should be a medium of serving people.
"However, the (Kamal Nath-led) government had digressed from that path," Scindia tweeted.
Truth has prevailed, he added.
"I have always professed and practised ethical politics and so I think it's time for me to quit. I'm going to submit my resignation as CM," said Nath at a press conference at CM House in Bhopal.
Nath, who became the central Indian state's 18th CM on December 17, 2019, after guiding the Congress to power in the state after 15 years, tried to strike an emotional chord with the people of the state. "The conspiracy hatched by the BJP along with our own MLAs amounts to betrayal with the people of MP, who will never forgive them for it," he said.
"Since day one, when our government came to power, the BJP was trying to destabilize the government. The BJP feared that owing to development works being carried out by our government, they might never return to power in the state. Ergo they were working to bring down the government," he maintained.
"Aaj ke baad hamesha kal aataa hai aur kal ke baad parso, aur parso zaroor aayega (today is always followed by tomorrow and tomorrow is ensued by day after tomorrow. I firmly believe day after tomorrow will certainly come)," Nath said.
It was indicative of his resolve of guiding the Congress back to power again by focussing on winning the 25 bulk assembly polls (even after BJP comes to power after fall of his government).
In a related development, mining minister Pradeep Jaiswal, one of the four independent MLAs supporting Nath's government announced supporting whichever government assumed power next in the state.
In changed situation, in the 205-member Vidhan Sabha, the BJP is now set to form next government with its own 106 MLAs (after resignation of its MLA Sharad Kol was accepted by Speaker) and support of an independent MLA, which is four more than simple majority mark of 103, while the Congress is far behind with just 92 MLAs.
(With ENS Inputs)