Rajasthan: Sachin Pilot Speaks Out Against Congress Leadership's Inaction On Gehlot Camp's Indiscipline
Congress leader Sachin Pilot questioned the party leadership for an "inordinate delay" in taking action against those who defied the then-president Sonia Gandhi last year.
Pilot was alluding to the show cause notices served to three MLAs close to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot for convening a separate meeting alongside the Congress Legislative Party (CLP) session in September 2022. The notices were issued on grounds of indiscipline, however, the All India Congress Committee (AICC) is yet to act on it.
Pilot has urged the AICC disciplinary committee under AK Antony, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, and the party leadership to explain why there has been such a long delay in a decision on the matter.
The legislative party meeting was called on September 25, 2022, by the Chief Minister in Jaipur, but it did not take place, despite the central observers Ajay Maken and Kharge being present.
Pilot stated that the party needs to take decisions about the Congress party in Rajasthan as elections are approaching at the end of the year.
During an interview with PTI, Pilot underscored the importance of this if the Congress party is to break the cycle of alternate governments between the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the state, which has persisted for the past 25 years.
Pilot pointed out that it was under the direction of then-Congress president Sonia Gandhi that the CLP meeting was called, so the non-compliance of the party directive was open defiance. He emphasised that discipline and compliance to the party line are paramount, and that it applies to everyone, regardless of their position within the party.
Khiladi Lal Bairwa, a Congress MLA and Sachin Pilot loyalist, has echoed Pilot's sentiment, saying that the entire state desires Sachin Pilot to lead the Congress in the upcoming elections in Rajasthan. Bairwa stated that the decision to make Pilot the Chief Minister should come from the party's High Command.
With elections in few months, the Congress high command seems to be dragging its heels on the question of who would be leading the party's campaign as the chief ministerial candidate. The fact that there are two factions existing in the party's Rajasthan unit, each quite vocal about the other's weaknesses and misgivings, does not augur well for the Congress, The party may witness a repeat of Punjab debacle in Rajasthan.
Meanwhile, despite continuous assurances from the Gandhis regarding his elevation to the post of Chief Minister, Pilot has consistently found himself on the losing end of his battle against Gehlot. Gehlot has publicly humiliated Pilot on multiple occasions over the last five years, yet each time the Chief Minister has emerged unscathed.
While other promising but disgruntled Congress leaders left the party in due time, Pilot's inability to take a stand and rely on Rahul Gandhi's assurances has damaged his credibility and bargaining power within the party.
This could be Pilot's last attempt to urge the party to give him his due. However, given his numerous rebellions that ended in failure, this latest move may be seen as another empty gesture.
(with inputs from PTI)
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