There is a misconception that it was Giridhar Gamang, who brought down the Vajpayee Government in 1999 during the trust vote in Lok Sabha. But, actually it was Saifuddin Soz, who triggered that collapse.
Gamang was just following his party’s instructions. Although he was the CM of Odisha, he was also a Lok Sabha MP technically and had a right to vote. He was requested by the BJP to use is moral conscience, but he was not in a position to disobey the Congress High Command.
On the other hand, Saifuddin Soz, who was with the National Conference, sprung a surprise and voted against his own alliance government, defying the party whip. He was influenced by VP Singh. He was even expelled from the party by Farooq Abdullah soon after the trust vote and joined the Congress four years later.
The BJP knew that Gamang would vote against the NDA Government, but they never knew that Saifuddin Soz would defy the whip and vote against them. Now, Giridhar Gamang has resigned from the Congress after rendering service to the party for 43 years. He was a nine-time MP from Koraput, a four-time Union Minister and former Chief Minister of Odisha. He accused the Congress Party for disregarding him and said that he regretted that trust vote episode. If we believe the reports, he is all set to join the BJP soon.