Pilot refuses to land on BJP, Cong now refuses the approval to land

Last Modified Thursday, 16 July 2020 (10:56 IST)
Jaipur/New Delhi:leader on Wednesday conveyed through media that he would not be joining the Bharatiya Janata Party as per rumour floated by some sections and received an offer from the to rejoin the party fold.
"Why would I join the against whom I have worked all my life" the 42-year-old leader told media."I just wanted to raise my legitimate grievances against Mr Gehlot and nothing more," he asserted.Mr Pilot said that the political developments in his state are just a ploy to spoil his image among the high command and party leaders.
As per reports, Mr Pilot and several Rajasthan MLAs are staying in ITC and Lemon Tree hotel in Manesar of Haryana, 280 km away from the pink city since past week.On his future course of action, Mr Pilot said it is yet unclear but wished to keep working for the people of the state.
 
Responding to Mr Pilot's assertion, Congress leader and party's spokesperson Randeep Surjewala asked him to immediately check-out from the hotel in BJP-ruled Haryana and return to the pink city.
 
"Through media, we have heard that you (Mr Pilot) does not want to join the BJP. Then why are you staying in hotel in Manesar of Haryana under the protection of Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. That hotel has become a place of horse-trading. Leave it immediately and return to your city," Mr Surjewala said while holding a press conference here.
 
Mr Surjewala asserted that Congress doors are open for him and will be accepted warmly.
Over allegations that Mr Pilot was deliberately sidelined despite sweating to de-thrown Vasundhara Raje government in 2018, the Congress leader stated that at very young age (41), Mr Pilot had held the post of an MLA, Union Minister and state president.
 
On Mr Pilot's expulsion from the deputy chief minister post, Mr Surjewala said Congress higher-ups, including many senior leaders--K C Venegopal and others--have approached him in last four to five days and urged him to raise his issues on party forum.
 
"After all efforts went in vain, we unfortunately took the decision with a heavy heart," he stated.
Mr Surjewala along with Ajay Maken have been send by party's high command to Jaipur to cool off the rising political temperature of the desert state.Congress' National General Secretary and Rajasthan in-charge Avinash Pande also asked Mr Pilot to return to the party fold.
 
"Political struggle is a continuous process that cannot be measured in a few years. Reverence and patience, the core of life, are essential in politics", the Congress leader said.Earlier in the day, Rajasthan Assembly Speaker Dr CP Joshi issued notices to Pilot and 18 other MLAs for skipping Congress Legislature Meeting (CLP) called to discuss the frictions between the camps of Pilot and Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot.
 
The Speaker has sought a reply by July 17, Friday. According to sources, if rebel MLAs fail to respond, it will be assumed that they are withdrawing their membership from the Congress.
However, as per sources, the rebel Congress leaders have called the notice ''illegal''. "We are very much with Congress, unless the party removes us. We are in touch with our lawyers and if it comes to that, after exhausting all options, will resort to legal recourse", the sources said.
On the other hand, in an apparent reference to Mr Pilot and his supporters, Mr Gehlot alleged that the young men of the Congress, instead of taking forward the grand-old party, are indulging in 'horse-trading.
 
"Golden knife is not for stabbing," Mr Gehlot said.Mr Gehlot said speaking good english, giving good bytes and being handsome isn't everything. "What's inside your heart for the country, your ideology, commitment is all needed", he asserted.
"
This new generation, they have become central ministers, state presidents, but if they had gone through what we been through, they would have understood," Mr Gehlot remarked.
Meanwhile, the opposition BJP seems to be keeping their cards close to their chest as they have been a 'mute' spectator.
 
Earlier, in the day, the BJP has called a high-level meeting which was to be attended by senior party leaders like Om Prakash Mathur, former Chief minister Vasundhara Raje, V Satish and many other position holders. But the meeting was cancelled later in the day. Ironically, cancelling of the meeting and Mr Pilot's assertion of not joining the BJP coincided.
 
There is also no official statement from higher-ups over the political situation in the state.
The Congress, however, continued to put the onus of political turmoil on the BJP."Last month all have seen that we kept our MLAs in hotel for more than 10 days just because of poaching by the BJP. Had we not done so, what happened today, would had happened then," the chief minister claimed.
 
Mr Gehlot further alleged that the BJP was using not only money-power but also 'misusing' central investigative agencies to blackmail its leaders."On one hand we are handling COVID-19 crisis, looking into unemployment, providing food and just see what they (BJP) are doing. Is this democracy?", he questioned.
 
The political turmoil began in the state when Special Operation Group (SOG) constituted by the chief minister to investigate alleged horse-trading before Rajya Sabha polls, asked Mr Pilot to record his statement. Later, the SOG also sent a letter to the chief minister for his statement, but Mr Pilot called it a 'coverup'.
 
Mr Pilot, then left his home state and reached the national capital region and claimed that he has a support of over 30 Congress MLAs, sufficient to topple the Gehlot-ruled government.
Mr Pilot along with two other ministers--Vishvendra Singh and Ramesh Meena--were sacked on Tuesday for 'anti-party' activities.
 
In the 200-member State Assembly, the Congress has 107 MLAs, while the BJP 72.
The ruling party has the support of one Rashtriya Lok Dal, two Communist Party of India (Marxist), two Bharatiya Tribal Party MLAs and 13 Independents.(UNI)