Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday alleged that Congress MLAs met BJP leaders, including Home Minister Amit Shah and Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, during the political crisis earlier this year in the state, and were allegedly told that the party’s government will be the sixth to be toppled by the BJP.
The BJP has hit back at Gehlot over his allegations “without evidence” and for failing to control the “lava of dissatisfaction within the Congress”.
During a virtual inauguration of a Congress office in Sirohi district on Saturday, Gehlot said the BJP is “about to start the game in Rajasthan once again”.
“The BJP is conspiring in every state. People say next is the turn of Maharashtra… They are about to start the game in Rajasthan once again,” Gehlot said at the event, which was also attended by Ajay Maken, who is Rajasthan in-charge of the Congress, state Congress president Govind Singh Dotasra and other Congress leaders.
“Ajay Maken-ji was with us at the hotel for 34 days. He knows what was happening in Rajasthan. And the way our MLAs met Amit Shah. Dharmendra Pradhan (Union Minister) was sitting there, Syed Zafar Islam, who now has become Rajya Sabha (member) of BJP, who brought Scindia to the BJP, he was also present there along with our MLAs,” Gehlot said, adding the crisis was resolved after Congress leaders such as Ajay Maken, K C Venugopal, Randeep Surjewala and Avinash Rai Pandey intervened and decided to suspend the Congress leaders.
During the event, Gehlot also alleged that Dharmendra Pradhan tried to boost the morale of Congress legislators by “pretending to talk to High Court and Supreme Court judges”. “They met for an hour and those MLAs told me, ‘sir, we were ashamed, there was one Sardar Patel who was the Home Minister and now there is this Amit Shah who is the Home Minister… feeding us sweets, snacks’. And Dharmendra Pradhan is pretending to talk to judges of the High Court and Supreme Court in order to boost our morale. And trying to create an atmosphere that ‘don’t worry, this is my prestige point, I toppled four governments and this sixth will be toppled too, have some patience’,” said Gehlot.
However, the BJP hit back at Gehlot for his claims.
“It is unfortunate that despite being the state’s CM, without any evidence, he took the name of the country’s home minister and Union Minister, which is outside political decorum. Everybody knows his party has its own political infighting and there is a lava of dissatisfaction inside Congress. Gehlot and the Congress leadership have failed to control it and he blames the BJP for it,” said state BJP president Satish Poonia.
Pradhan, who is on a two-day visit to MP, evaded queries on the issue, according to PTI.
During the crisis in Rajasthan earlier this year, the Congress had removed two cabinet ministers from their posts besides sacking Pilot as deputy chief minister and state party chief.