Rajasthan political crisis: Here's everything we know so far
Over the course of this weekend, a lot has changed for the sitting government in Jaipur. Going by recent developments, Deputy CM of Rajasthan Sachin Pilot apparently holds the last few strings keeping the state government afloat. Depending on his actions, the Congress party may lose or retain power in the state. Here's everything we know about the political crisis in Rajasthan thus far.
CM v/s Deputy CM: Congress' infighting responsible for crisis?
Before mulling over the recent changes in the status quo, it is imperative to note that the roots for trouble in Rajasthan's politics were laid even before Congress came to power after winning the crucial 2018 Assembly elections. Party veteran Ashok Gehlot was made the CM for a third time, which upset Pilot, who had worked hard in uplifting the party in the state.
The rift deepened with time, led to formation of camps
Throughout the one-and-half-year-long period of the Gehlot government so far, he and Pilot have been at loggerheads. They first disagreed on portfolio allocation and have since crossed swords on various policies and actions of the government, thereby leading to formation of camps within the party.
Interrogation summons served as last straw for Pilot
According to reports, a letter asking Pilot to appear for questioning in relation to an investigation into recent allegations of horse-trading served as the last straw for the Deputy CM. Pilot was on Friday summoned for interrogation by the Special Operations Group (SOG) in connection with a complaint filed by Rajasthan Chief Whip Mahesh Joshi, alleging horse-trading in state politics.
Gehlot pointed out he also received the summons
However, CM Gehlot has pointed out that he also received the summons for questioning in the matter, and it is their duty to cooperate. "Notices have come from the SOG to the Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister, Chief Whip and some other ministers and MLAs... It is not appropriate to present it differently by some media," Gehlot tweeted earlier today.
Meanwhile, Pilot arrived Delhi to meet party high command
Miffed with the summons, MLAs from the Pilot camp said that the letter "crossed all limits" and they can no longer work under Gehlot. Meanwhile, Pilot, along with some loyalist legislators, on Saturday reached Delhi to discuss to ongoing crisis with the party high command. He is expected to hold a meeting with party president Sonia Gandhi in this regard.
Reportedly, Pilot is also in talks with the BJP
Reports said that Pilot has also been in talks with the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), claiming he has the support of 16 Congress MLAs and three independent Assembly members. However, BJP is reluctant to offer him the Chief Ministerial post due to internal leadership issues. Some leaders said Pilot could also consider floating his own regional party, and not join the BJP.
Gehlot to hold meeting with MLAs tonight
Meanwhile, in view of the recent developments, CM Gehlot has called a legislature party meeting at his residence tonight. His aides said they would try to ensure that all their MLAs attend the meet. They also reportedly invited Pilot but failed to contact him. "We are taking adequate precautions to ensure that all our MLAs are present," sources told NDTV.
Just months ago, Congress lost power in MP
In March, the 15-month-old Congress government in Madhya Pradesh shook after over 20 MLAs, including long-time stalwart Jyotiraditya Scindia, quit the party. Subsequently, the Kamal Nath-led government collapsed. BJP staked claim to form the government and the party's Shivraj Singh Chouhan was sworn-in as CM.
Scindia takes a dig at Congress
Congress' Kapil Sibal says, 'Worried for our party'
Worried for our party— Kapil Sibal (@KapilSibal) July 12, 2020
Will we wake up only after the horses have bolted from our stables ?