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The Punjab redux in Rajasthan!

By Vinod Kumar Shukla- 25 Nov 2022


New Delhi (24.11.2022): When Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot makes a no-hold-barred comment on his former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot by terming him a traitor and whatnot, it reminds the same peculiar scenario in the Congress that was played out in Punjab where former CM Captain Amrinder Singh, former PCC chief Navjot Singh Sidhu, and another former CM Charanjit Singh Channi were at loggerheads for quite a long. The result was that the party was humiliated in the Assembly elections as never before and a certain victory was ultimately turned into a defeat – a self-goal to say.
In the post-poll scenario, Interesting developments resulted out of these bickerings Amrinder Singh landed in BJP with the family, Channi landed in London and Sidhu in jail. 
When elections in Rajasthan are just a year away, the state has been so prepared to be favorable for the BJP with a clear communal divide and total collapse of law and order and infighting in the Congress. The BJP’s accusation of unprecedented appeasement is too little to add to the woes of the Congress than the troubles caused by the party itself.
Nothing could be more alarming for the Congress than this, the Bharat Jodo Yatra is about to enter Rajasthan and two senior leaders of the party are washing dirty linen in public. In a scathing attack on his former deputy Sachin Pilot, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said, "A gaddar (traitor) cannot be the Chief Minister. How can people accept a man who does not have even 10 MLAs... Someone who rebelled against the party and has been named a traitor." 
But the CM did not become the party president as per the wishes of party leadership and hoodwinked the situation by prompting 90-odd MLAs to threaten to resign if the CM is moved out of Rajasthan.
Who was Gehlot making a fool of? Asks an insider. Gehlot has gone to the extent of accusing Pilot of hobnobbing with Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan to topple his government. The CM further claims to have proof of it. 
All this will send a wrong message to electorates for sure before possible December 2023 Assembly election and May 2024 Lok Sabha elections. The most interesting part is that the central leadership has failed to rein in leaders in Punjab and yet again is the case in Rajasthan.
On the contrary, Gehlot cocked a snook at Congress leadership by putting forth the condition that not at the cost of the Chief Minister when the leadership expected him to take over the responsibility of National Congress president. He is rather being accused of compromising with the ideals of the party and is more interested in establishing his son in politics before hanging his boots. This is the reason that he doesn’t want Sachin Pilot to take the lead in Rajasthan as this will scuttle his chances. For party insiders, his praise by Prime Minister Narendra Modi casts doubt over Gehlot.
Everything is not hunky-dory either in the Rajasthan BJP with lots of leaders opposed to accepting Vasundhara Raje as their leader but the central leadership of the BJP nipped any revolt in the bud or played it down be it the case of Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat in recent time so to say. In most of the cases, it doesn’t allow any revolt to happen in the very first place. So the ball is yet again in the court of the top brass of Congress. 
(By Vinod Kumar Shukla)

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