Congress observers Mallikarjun Kharge and Ajay Maken on Monday met Sonia Gandhi in Delhi and apprised her of the crisis in Rajasthan, with the party president reportedly expressing disappointment with the stand of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, sources told ABP News.
“How did Ashok Gehlot do this? Did not expect this from Gehlot,” Sonia Gandhi reportedly told AICC in-charge for Rajasthan Ajay Maken and Kharge during the meeting.
Sonia Gandhi has sought a written report about the crisis in Rajasthan by Tuesday.
“I have briefed Congress President… she has sought a detailed report which I will send to her..,” Maken told media persons after the meeting.
The Congress in Rajasthan plunged into a crisis on Sunday after around 90 MLAs submitted their resignation to Rajasthan Assembly Speaker CP Joshi over a possible move to appoint Sachin Pilot as Gehlot’s successor.
To register their protest, the MLAs skipped the Congress Legislative Party (CLP) meeting and huddled at the residence of Cabinet minister Shanti Dhariwal.
Maken said the Congress president had asked the AICC observers to meet all MLAs separately. The CLP meeting was called to pass a resolution authorising the Congress president to take a decision on Gehlot’s successor.
Terming the move by the MLAs “indiscipline”, Maken said the legislators and ministers loyal to CM Gehlot cannot pose conditions to the party leadership as they amount to a “conflict of interest”.
“Some representatives of MLAs, ministers came and put forth three demands. Their condition is that the CLP leader be elected after October 19 and any decision should be taken after that… This cannot happen as those who are moving the resolution after October 19 would themselves take the decision and this would amount to a conflict of interest,” PTI quoted Maken as saying.
Congress sources told ABP that the CLP meet was kept after Gehlot’s consent and the place and time were set as per his request. Gehlot had even spoken with Congress leaders in Delhi several times before convening the meeting of the legislature party.
Sources said Gehlot was ready on the proposal authorising Sonia Gandhi to choose the Rajasthan CLP leader, but after the revolt of the MLAs, the CM said the legislators were not listening to him too.
The Congress will likely issue a show-cause notice to some ministers who had called the parallel meeting on Sunday. However, Congress sources told ABP that the party was likely to adopt a wait and watch strategy and maintain status quo till the last date of nomination for the Congress president’s election, which is on September 30.