As the Jyotiraditya Scindia-loyalists engaged in an open war, a bit defensive Kamal Nath offered cabinet posts to rebel MLAs as part of amicably settling the rumbles in the party at any cost.
On Monday, surviving on a wafer-thin majority, Nath went into a huddle with Digvijaya Singh and other senior leaders at his residence before calling a cabinet meeting at around 10pm. This came after he met Sonia Gandhi in Delhi to discuss the political situation as well as nominees for the Rajya Sabha elections.
The cabinet meeting was attended by 22 ministers, all of whom tendered their resignations, paving the way for the CM to reconstitute his cabinet to accommodate the rebel MLAs. "We have expressed our solidarity with the chief minister and submitted resignations to him in the cabinet meeting," the senior minister said.
Whether the gambit keeps the government standing will be known on Tuesday when Scindia makes a public appearance in Gwalior to commemorate the birth anniversary of his father, the late Congress stalwart Madhavrao Scindia.
Digvijaya Singh, meanwhile, said they tried contacting Scindia but he was reportedly down with swine flu and hence, they were unable to speak to him.
The rumblings in the Congress had started last week when it had accused the BJP of trying to topple its government after 10 MLAs of the ruling party and those of its allies travelled to Haryana, though the BJP had denied the charge.
Of them, eight had come back and many of them wanted ministerial berths, according to sources. However, two Congress MLAs have not yet returned. To add to the woes of the party, Scindia shifted 20 of his loyalists to Bengaluru as part of intensifying a rebel war.