Bhopal: Following a long drawn see-saw battle between Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Madhya Pradesh, the former emerged as the single largest party winning 114 out of 230 seats. Congress leaders met Governor Anandiben Patel and staked claim to form the government in the state, adding that the party has the support of 122 MLAs.
The Bahujan Samaj Party (BJP) and the Samajwadi Party have, meanwhile, extended support to the grand old party in Madhya Pradesh after it fell short of a majority in the state by just two seats.
Earlier in the day, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan tendered his resignation to the Governor, claiming the sole responsibility of BJP's defeat in Madhya Pradesh. With the induction of the new MP chief minister, the Congress Party will make a comeback in the state after 15 years.
Here's a look at the CM probables in Madhya Pradesh:
Congress has not named a CM face for Madhya Pradesh if the party comes to power, but Kamal Nath is being viewed as a prime contender for the top post. He is a nine-time Member of Parliament from Chhindwara. Though Kamal Nath is not contesting the Assembly elections, voters in Chhindwara have been lured in his name with slogans of 'Kamal Nath as CM'. However, while he dominates in the region in Lok Sabha polls, the Congress has been unable to defeat the BJP in Assembly polls here. In 2013, Congress won only three out of the seven seats in Chhindwara district but Kamal Nath went on to win the Lok Sabha seat for the ninth time. The BJP, meanwhile, is confident that such slogans will not help the Congress and have maintained that anti-incumbency for the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government is not a factor in the polls.
Kamal Nath has a tough competition from Jyotiraditya Scindia when it comes to being the chief ministerial face of the party in the state. Scindia, who is the party's campaign committee chief, enjoys as good a support from Congress members in the state. Not just the Congress, the BJP also understands his importance in state politics. Many of BJP's campaigns were surrounded around Scindia with one of them being 'Maf Karo Maharaj, hamara neta Shivraj'. Scindia is also referred to as Maharaj in the state by many due to his royal legacy. An MP from the Guna-Shivpuri constituency, Scindia had secured a win during the last Lok Sabha elections in 2014 when most of his party colleagues faced a defeat amid a widespread Modi wave then. There have been several reports about a long-running rivalry between Scindia and Nath for the CM post.