Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has characterized the ongoing feud with his rival Sachin Pilot as an "internal matter" of the Congress party. The focus now lies on forging a united front as the state elections draw closer.
Closed Door Discussions
In an interview with NDTV, Gehlot revealed that recent discussions took place in Delhi, supervised by Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge, KC Venugopal, and Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa. However, he refrained from elaborating on the details, emphasizing the need to close the topic to avoid any misunderstandings.
Action Against Vasundhara Raje
While Gehlot expressed readiness to take action against former Chief Minister and BJP leader Vasundhara Raje, he emphasized that all allegations against her had already been taken to court. He clarified that if any pending matters were identified by anyone, including ordinary citizens, he would address them promptly.
Clarification On Controversial Statement
Gehlot addressed his previous statement regarding Vasundhara Raje's role in saving his government during the 2020 revolt. He explained that his comment had been misinterpreted and clarified that Raje had not directly conveyed her disapproval of horse-trading to him, but some of her MLAs had indirectly suggested it.
Projecting Unity, Lingering Rift
Last week, Gehlot and Pilot posed for photographs together after a meeting with the Congress leadership in Delhi, attempting to project unity. However, Gehlot concluded the appearance by urging leaders to be patient and wait for their opportunity to serve, indicating that their rift remains unresolved.
Power Tussle And Revolt
The power struggle between Gehlot and Pilot has persisted since the Congress came to power in Rajasthan in 2018. While Pilot initially accepted a subordinate role, he led a revolt in 2020, camping near Delhi until assurances were given by the Gandhis. However, the rebellion lost momentum as the majority of MLAs remained loyal to Gehlot.
Previous Challenges and Solo Campaign
In the past, 72 MLAs resigned in protest against the Congress's decision to appoint Gehlot as party president, potentially resulting in his replacement in Rajasthan. Earlier this year, Pilot launched an individual campaign for the Rajasthan polls, facing criticism from Gehlot during Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra.
As the state elections approach, the dynamics between Gehlot and Pilot continue to shape the political landscape in Rajasthan. The quest for party unity remains crucial, and the outcome of their internal conflicts will undoubtedly influence the electoral scenario in the state.