Voted to Power, How Kamal Nath Decided to Change the Identity of Madhya Pradesh

Bhopal: Underlining the Congress government efforts to give a fresh identity to Madhya Pradesh, Chief Minister Kamal Nath said first thing he asked himself after coming to power was whether the state should be identified by dumpers, Vyapam or the aspirations of youths.

Speaking at the News18 Rising MP Summit in Bhopal, Nath said he decided to change the profile of the state after coming to power. “Why should we be compared to smaller states and not states like Maharashtra and Karnataka?” he asked.

“We wanted an atmosphere where public has faith in administration. My stress was always on how to secure future of the youth,” he said.

On BJP’s criticism against his anti-mafia drive, the CM said it’s quite evident that mafia flourished in the 15 years of BJP.

“I am clarifying again that my target is mafia and not any party. By mafia activities, I mean blackmail and extortion,” said Nath, adding that if anyone has flouted civic body norms, it’s up to civic authorities to deal with the matter.

The Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister stood his ground on the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act and NRC, saying they were against the sentiments of unity in diversity.

“It’s bizarre as they would seek evidences of your father and grandfather. Even if you have all the documents, including Aadhaar, you won’t be included in NRC,” claimed Nath. Instead of focusing on NRC/CAA, we need to stress on unity, brotherhood and faltering economy, he added.

He also said the execution of any law was the matter of the state and no one could come from outside and implement it. “We won’t accept anything divisive and against the soul of the Constitution,” he said.

Nath criticised the BJP at the Centre for the law and order situation in Delhi citing the JNU instance.

Asked to comment on senior BJP leaders issuing different kinds of threats to his government, Nath said he derived fun from seeing a race among BJP leaders to be relevant. “You (media) also need spice and they offer you the same to keep themselves relevant,” added the CM.

The CM countered BJP criticism on farm loan waiver, saying his government has waived off loans of current accounts and defaulters.

He cited practical issues such as farmers having several accounts and absence of proper documents that had delayed loan waiver in several cases.

On the introduction of eggs in mid-day meal, Nath said there was a demand for eggs, especially from tribal blocks. “It’s totally optional. You also have eggs selling in market and those who wish to consume them can buy and eat.”