It is unfortunate that the people of Rajasthan have to pay for the infighting in Congress, former BJP chief minister Vasundhara Raje tweeted on Saturday, commenting on the crisis that has seen two top leaders from the ruling party in the state squabbling in public.
— Vasundhara Raje (@VasundharaBJP) July 18, 2020
The former CM spotlighted the coronavirus situation in the state, the locusts attack, crime against women that she said are few among many that have been plaguing the state and its people, drawing a sharp distinction with the present concerns of the state government.
Raje urged the leaders from the ruling party to “not drag BJP” and its leaders’ names in this political churning in the state. The former CM also told the ruling government that the “interests of people must remain paramount”. She ended her tweet with #RajasthanFirst.
BJP ally Hanuman Beniwal, who heads the Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP), on Thursday accused Vasundhara Raje of rallying Congress lawmakers in support of Ashok Gehlot, whose government is battling a rebellion from his former deputy, Sachin Pilot.
Adding further drama to the political turmoil in the state, the Special Operations Group (SOG) of the state police registered two criminal cases after audio tapes were made public in which a rebel Congress MLA is purportedly talking to Union minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and a middleman about toppling the Ashok Gehlot government.
The Congress alleged today that rebel Rajasthan lawmakers of the Sachin Pilot team currently camping in the BJP-ruled Haryana are now being moved to Karnataka, another BJP state.
Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said that when the special team of the police reached the Haryana hotel to collect the voice samples of the legislators in the case of audio tapes, the police was stopped at the gates first. Then by the time the state police was allowed to enter the premises, said Khera, the lawmakers had escaped.
On its part, the BJP has demanded an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the allegations made by the Congress in Rajasthan that it has audio tapes to prove that the BJP was in collusion with rebel Congress leaders to bring down the Gehlot government.
CM Gehlot has been insistent that his former deputy, who ruled out that he is joining the BJP, has been working in collusion with the opposition party to bring down his government.
The feud between the two leaders reached its apogee when Pilot, 42, was asked to record his statement with the police probing the case of an alleged attempt to bring down the state government.