Pilot's sacking Congress high command's decision : Gehlot


Jaipur, (UNI) Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot here on Tuesday said the decision to sack his deputy Sachin Pilot and two other cabinet ministers was not taken by him but Congress high command. 

The Chief Minister, while speaking to mediapersons here after attending a meeting of Congress Legislature Party (CLP), said Mr Pilot and others in his camp did not attend the meeting despite a 'humble' call given to them to discuss the issue. 

The meeting of Congress leaders was again called on Tuesday morning to discuss issues openly and resolve them with an open invitation to the Pilot camp, who again gave it a miss. 

"It was thus concluded that they (Pilot and others) have made up their mind to remain aloof," he claimed. 

Mr Gehlot also mentioned the party's constitution which calls for action against anyone who indulges in anti-party activities. "Its written in the rule book. Everything is as per rules," he asserted. 

The Chief Minister accused opposition Bharatiya Janata Party of trying to overthrow his government through 'horse-trading' his MLAs. 

"Pilot and others are just ploy. The main player is the BJP who is trying money power as they did in Madhya Pradesh. They have offered Rs 25 crore to many and will not succeed in Rajasthan," the Chief Minister claimed. 

He said that for toppling the government, one needs two-third majority. "Is it possible in Rajasthan. Did you see how many MLAs attended the CLP meeting?", he questioned and asserted that Congress would successfully completes its five-year term. 

Mr Gehlot called the BJP 'shameless' for allegedly playing cheap politics even during the time of COVID-19 pandemic. 

On allegations of several MLAs that the CM is 'non-cooperative', Mr Gehlot said he has remained unbiased and did all possible he could. 

"Be it roads, schools or colleges, I have cleared projects of every MLA," he stated. 

Earlier in the day, Mr Pilot was sacked from every post he held in Rajasthan for skipping second consecutive meeting of the CLP called in Jaipur to discuss changing political situation of the desert state. 

After being sacked, Mr Pilot tweeted, "Nobody wants to leave his home, but can't continue to put up with this kind of humiliation; my MLAs and supporters are extremely hurt and I will have to listen to them.'  He said truth can be rattled but not defeated. 

Replacing Mr Pilot, Education Minister Govind Singh Dotasra has been made the new Congress chief of Rajasthan.  The party has also dropped Mr Pilot's loyalists Vishvendra Singh and Ramesh Meena from the state cabinet.  Mr Pilot, along with several lawmakers, continue to remain in Delhi. 

The BJP seems to be closely watching the fast-paced developments and is yet to issue official statement over the imbroglio in Rajasthan.  In the 200-member State Assembly, the Congress has 107 MLAs, while the BJP 72. The ruling party has the support of one Rashtriya Lok Dal, two Communist Party of India (Marxist), two Bharatiya Tribal Party MLAs and 13 Independents.