‘If I meet him, he cannot say he didn’t know about crisis’: Gehlot on letter to PM Modi

Locked in a bitter power struggle with his former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot that has almost led to the collapse of the government in the desert state, Gehlot wrote to PM Modi alleging that the ruling party at the Centre had made attempts to offer money to Congress MLAs to defect.
Ashok Gehlot
Jaipur: Rajasthan Chief Minister and Congress leader Ashok Gehlot addresses a press conference in Jaipur, on May 1, 2019. (Photo: Ravi Shankar Vyas/IANS)

After writing to Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarding the ongoing political turmoil in the state, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Thursday said since India is a democracy, the Prime Minister needs to be aware of the complete scenario and he should not be misinformed about the political crisis.

“I wrote to the PM as this is a democracy. I wrote the letter so that he doesn’t say that he didn’t have information or his people gave him incomplete information. I wrote it so that if I meet him, he doesn’t say that he didn’t know about the crisis,” Gehlot said referring to his letter to PM Modi, reportedly written on Sunday, over the political situation in Rajasthan.

In the letter, the veteran Congress leader had alleged that there had been large-scale attempts to destabilize the elected Congress government in the state and accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of trying to poach Congress legislators. Gehlot had also named Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat in his communication to the Prime Minister.

The Rajasthan Chief Minister wrote, “There have been despicable attempts to destabilize elected governments through horse-trading. I don’t know to what extent you are aware of all this or whether you are being misled.”

Locked in a bitter power struggle with his former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot that has almost led to the collapse of the government in the desert state, Gehlot wrote to PM Modi alleging that the ruling party at the Centre had made attempts to offer money to Congress MLAs to defect.

“For some time, attempts are being made to destabilize democratically elected governments. This is an insult to the mandate and open violation of constitutional values. Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh are examples of this,” Gehlot wrote in his letter to the PM.

The ongoing power tussle between Gehlot and his erstwhile deputy Sachin Pilot has now entered its second week. On Thursday, the Supreme Court allowed the Rajasthan high court to pass orders tomorrow on a plea by rebel Congress leader Sachin Pilot and 18 other dissident MLAs challenging their disqualification and setting aside speaker CP Joshi’s request for a stay on the proceedings.

The Chief Minister has accused Sachin Pilot of seeking the BJP’s help to topple the Congress government in Rajasthan just like the modus operandi adopted in Madhya Pradesh, where former Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia’s defection to the BJP led to the collapse of the Kamal Nath government in March, this year.

Sachin Pilot, who has gone to court over his disqualification, has served a legal notice to Congress MLA Giriraj Singh who alleged that he had been offered Rs 35 crore to cross vote in the recent Rajya Sabha elections, news agency ANI had reported.

Pilot on Wednesday asked for a sum of Re 1 and a written apology before the media for the “false and frivolous allegations” within seven days. On Monday, Giriraj Singh Malinga said at the talks held at Pilot’s house he was offered money to switch to the BJP. The MLA said he subsequently informed chief minister Ashok Gehlot about the plan.

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