New Delhi, Jan 8: Convention of electing Assembly Speaker unopposed seems to be breaking this time round in Madhya Pradesh. If the four-term Congress MLA Narmada Prasad Prajapati has filed the nomination of the party candidate for Speaker then the BJP also jumped into the fray fielding seventh-term MLAs and scheduled tribe leader Vijay Shah. Speculation is rife that the BJP has played this game with the support of angry Congress MLAs.
Clash between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party is continuing right from the day one of the constitution of the 15th Assembly of Madhya Pradesh. But with this decision of the BJP, the Congress is also mulling to give the position of deputy speaker to its own MLAs instead of giving it to the Opposition.
Parliamentary affairs minister of Madhya Pradesh Govind Singh issued whip to ensure presence of every MLA in Assembly. Congress candidate for the post of Speaker handed over four sets of nomination papers to chief secretary A P Singh. The Congress has got the one set of nomination paper signed by leaders of its allies the BSP and the SP in the state Sanjeev Singh Kushwaha and Rajesh Shukla. They have signed as proposer and seconder.
Despite the BJP being nowhere close to the majority, the BJP has fielded the tribal leader and former minister Shah for the post. Former chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is his proposer and Dr Narottam Mishra is his seconder.
Congress ministers Sajjan Singh Verma, Govind Singh Rajput and Tarun Bhanot said that the BJP would not get post of deputy speaker now. Sources said that the Congress is working on the strategy of appointing one of its discontented leader as deputy speaker. Nomination form for deputy speaker has been taken from secretariat.
But there is one question that is being asked in the political circle of Madhya Pradesh that if the BJP has the required number for his candidate to get elected on the post of Assembly speaker.