The Congress on Friday (July 17) released the transcripts of alleged telephonic conversations of horse-trading between the rebel MLAs of Rajasthan and the BJP and said that the MLAs Bhanwal Lal Sharma and Vishwendra Singh have been suspended from the primary membership of the party.
Show cause notices have also been issued to the rebel MLAs in this regard.
Making the announcement on Friday morning, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala also demanded the filing of an FIR against Union minister Gajendra Singh Sekhawat for hatching the coup to dismantle the Ashok Gehlot government. Shekhawat has been named in an FIR filed against the two rebel MLAs.
Surjewala also read out the transcript of a phone conversation allegedly involving Shekhawat and BJP leader Sanjay Jain and suspended Congress MLAs Bhanwal Lal Sharma and Vishwendra Singh.
“Yesterday, shocking tapes were aired by the media in which Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, BJP leader Sanjay Jain and Congress MLA Bhanwar Lal Sharma spoke about bribing MLAs and bringing down Rajasthan government,” ANI quoted him as telling reporters.
Surjewala demanded that former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot clarifies his stand on the issue.
Sharma, however, has refuted the allegations, calling the audio as fake.
“They are trying to pressure MLAs using fake audios as the chief minister is in trouble,” NDTV quoted him as saying.
The Congress’ announcement comes ahead of the Rajasthan High Court’s hearing of a petition filed by Pilot and 18 rebel MLAs against the disqualification notices issued to them by Assembly Speaker CP Joshi.
The disqualification notices were slapped on the MLAs after they missed two Congress Legislature Party meetings.
The MLAs have questioned the notices saying that they can’t be issued the same when the Assembly is not in session. They have also challenged a constitutional rule that allows a speaker to disqualify an MLA who has voluntarily given up his membership.