As the Congress fights a crisis in Rajasthan where deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot is at loggerheads with his boss Ashok Gehlot, there is no word yet from former Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
But on Monday, Gandhi’s office insisted that “He (Sachin Pilot) is always in his heart. And they speak often and directly. They have great respect and affection for each other.”
There has been no word on Twitter either from Rahul Gandhi on the Rajasthan crisis. The former Congress president tweeted twice on Monday. The first tweet questioned the government’s claim the fight against Covid-19 was going well and the second was about Prime Minister Narenda Modi’s stand on the face off with China in Ladakh.
This response came when HT asked for RahulGandhi’s response to whether he had been in touch with Pilot, who is said to have been furious after the Rajasthan Police’s Special Operations Group (SOG) summoned him for questioning after Gehlot claimed that the BJP was trying to lure Congress MLAs by bribing them with sums ranging from Rs 10 cr to Rs 15 cr.
The SOG operates under Gehlot and although the chief minister was also summoned Pilot’s supporters claimed it was an eye wash.
Pilot had claimed that the Ashok Gehlot government was in minority and that he had the support of over 30 MLAs in the 200-member Assembly.
In the afternoon, the Rajasthan Congress Legislature Party passed a resolution in Jaipur supporting the Ashok Gehlot-led government in the state amid the tussle for power.
It also recommended strong disciplinary action against any Congress MLA and office-bearer who conspires against the government.
“This meeting urges that strict disciplinary action be taken against any office bearer or member of the legislature party who indulge in activities against the Congress government, party or gets involved in any conspiracy,” read the resolution.
Party sources claimed that 106 MLAs, both from the Congress and those supporting it, were present in the meeting. Sachin Pilot and some of his loyalists did not attend it.
The resolution expressed confidence in the leadership of national party president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.
Ahead of the meeting of the MLAs at the chief minister’s official residence, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala the party doors were still open for Pilot to sort out matters.
“On behalf of Congress leadership, including Sonia ji and Rahul ji, I convey that doors of Congress party are always open for Sachin ji or any member,” Surjewala said.
There has been no word from Sachin Pilot’s camp about his next step. The deputy CM’s aide told HT in the morning that the leader is not joining the BJP.