Rajasthan: Governor rejects CM Gehlot's proposal for Assembly, again
For the third time since Rajasthan plunged into a political crisis, Governor Kalraj Mishra rejected Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot's proposal for an Assembly session, prompting the senior Congress leader to head towards Raj Bhavan to understand "what the Governor wants." Gehlot wants an Assembly to be convened from July 31, but the Governor is adamant on a three weeks' notice. Here are more details.
For the past few weeks, Rajasthan has been witnessing political turmoil, which started after former deputy CM, Sachin Pilot, revolted against Gehlot. In the 200-member Assembly, the majority mark to remain in power is 101, and Pilot claimed Gehlot has lost the same. Consequently, 19 MLAs (who sided with Gehlot) were threatened disqualification by Speaker CP Joshi, but they remained safe, courtesy court orders.
After Rajasthan HC didn't give a favorable verdict, Gehlot pushed for a floor test, pressurizing Governor Mishra to call a session. Though a Governor is constitutionally-bound to respect such a request, Rajasthan's Governor remained firm. Defending his decision this week, he said he wasn't against the session, but Gehlot has to clarify if he would bring in a confidence motion and honor coronavirus-induced precautions.
Earlier, Mishra had said the Assembly can't be convened without "special urgency." "From what I know, there is no seating plan to accommodate all the 200 MLAs while maintaining social distancing," he added.
After his proposal was rejected again, Gehlot laid down his future plans. "I am going to meet him to find out what he wants. Whether he seeks a notice of 21 days or 31 days to call Assembly session, we will be victorious," he said, before leaving for the Governor's house. Reportedly, the state government didn't clarify their intentions on the trust vote in the latest proposal.
On a related note, Governor Mishra canceled the Independence Day "At Home" event, in the wake of coronavirus pandemic. The Raj Bhavan said he was concerned about the spurt in COVID-19 infections in the state. He has reportedly called for taking serious steps to control the health crisis. At 38,964 total cases, Rajasthan has lost 650 to the virus.