Amidst the speculation surrounding the "red diary" in Rajasthan's political circles, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asserted today (27 July) that the contents of the diary will be detrimental to the ruling Congress party in the upcoming Assembly elections.
In a swift retort, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot remarked that while the Prime Minister may be able to visualise an "imaginary red diary," he seems to be oblivious to the soaring prices of 'red tomatoes' and cylinders, which have severely impacted household budgets.
During a rally in Sikar, Rajasthan, the Prime Minister derided senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi's slogan of "mohabbat ki dukaan" (store of love) and quipped, "The latest offering from the 'store of loot and lies' is the red diary. It is rumored to contain incriminating evidence of corruption within the Congress party. This red diary will spell doom for the Congress in the upcoming elections."
Furthermore, the Prime Minister directed his criticism towards the Ashok Gehlot government for its failure to prevent paper leaks in job recruitment exams.
During a state government event, Gehlot responded to the accusations by stating that the red diary is merely an imagination.
He denied the existence of any red diary and criticised his opponent for being unable to see the real issues affecting the people, such as rising prices.
Gehlot confidently declared that the people would express their discontent with his opponent through the red flag, in the upcoming elections.
The red diary has become a major topic of discussion in Rajasthan, following a series of dramatic events in the Assembly last week.
Rajendra Singh Gudha, a Congress MLA who was recently dismissed for his comments on the state government's failure to ensure women's safety, caused a stir when he entered the Assembly carrying a red diary.
He claimed that this diary held incriminating evidence against Gehlot. However, he was promptly escorted out of the House.
Recognising the political advantage, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) seized upon the opportunity presented by the red diary. They asserted that the diary contained explosive secrets that could potentially destroy the political careers of numerous leaders.
The BJP implied that the revelations within the diary could have far-reaching consequences for those involved.
Gudha alleges that the red diary contains detailed records of bribes given by the Gehlot camp to MLAs, independents, and others in order to secure his government's stability during the 2020 rebellion led by Sachin Pilot.
According to him, the diary also includes information about pay-offs made by the Congress party to ensure the victory of their candidates, even in the face of tough competition from BJP-backed independent candidate and media baron Subhash Chandra.
These claims have added fuel to the fire surrounding the red diary controversy.
The claims made by Gudha have been dismissed by the Congress as fabricated.
The Prime Minister's rally today (27 July) took place amidst ongoing public disagreement between his office and Chief Minister Gehlot. The Chief Minister had accused his speech of being removed from the event's itinerary.
This morning, Gehlot expressed his disappointment on social media, stating that he could only welcome the Prime Minister on Twitter as his video-conference speech had been cancelled.
In a post on social media, he expressed his frustration with the situation. He mentioned that his pre-scheduled 3-minute address had been removed from the programme by the Prime Minister's Office (PMO), preventing him from welcoming the Prime Minister through a speech.
However, he extended a warm welcome to the Prime Minister through his tweet.
The Chief Minister of Rajasthan presented his demands for the state.
The response from the Prime Minister's Office clarified that it was the Chief Minister's office that stated he would not attend the event due to a leg injury.
The PMO tweeted that the Chief Minister had been invited and his speech was scheduled, but his office had declined the invitation. They emphasised that he was always welcome to join and his presence would be highly appreciated, unless his injury prevented him from attending.
To support his claim, Gehlot shared letters as evidence that he was initially planning to participate in the Prime Minister's program remotely, but there were last-minute changes in the plans.
Gehlot wrote in Hindi, "Respected Prime Minister, I acknowledge that your office has taken note of my tweet, but it seems that they may not be fully aware of the facts. The Ministry of Health had included my address in the proposed minute-to-minute programme. However, I was informed last night that I would not be able to speak at the event."
During his address to farmers in Sikar, Prime Minister Modi mentioned that Ashok Gehlot was expected to attend the programme but could not due to his ill health. He extended his prayers for Gehlot's speedy recovery.
The Prime Minister also criticised the Opposition front INDIA, highlighting that they changed their name from UPA to INDIA in an attempt to conceal the wrongdoings of the past.
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