Former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath has been asked by the Congress to play the mediator in resolving the crisis in Rajasthan after Sachin Pilot went on fast demanding action against alleged corruption under the previous BJP government.
Kamal Nath along with Congress general secretary (Organisation) K C Venugopal on Thursday met Pilot, who told them that his fast was directed at lack of action against corruption and cannot be deemed “anti-party”.
Also Read: Sachin Pilot sits on dharna, targets own govt in Rajasthan
“Though the meeting was cordial, nothing concrete came out of it,” a source in the know of the developments told PTI.
Congress Rajasthan in-charge Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa earlier on Thursday met party chief Mallikarjun Kharge for a second time in two days in New Delhi to discuss the Rajasthan issue. He also met Rahul Gandhi.
Leaders close to Pilot say that his hunger strike in Jaipur was against the corruption under the earlier Vasundhara Raje regime and cannot be termed “anti-party”.
They say the Congress had raised the corruption plank in the Adani matter and in Karnataka and that Pilot’s action was in line with that.
As far as the issue of “indiscipline” is concerned, the Pilot side also raised questions as to why no action was taken against loyalists of Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot who last year defied a directive to hold a legislature party meeting.
They sought to know why Randhawa called Pilot’s fast “anti-party” even before it took place.
Also Read: In election year, Rajasthan to create 19 new districts
The Congress leadership is caught in a bind and reportedly wants to find a middle path to the crisis in Rajasthan, which will face assembly elections later this year.
Pilot reached New Delhi on Wednesday, a day after his a fast, which sections of the Congress and Gehlot supporters viewed as an act actually directed at the chief minister’s leadership.
Gehlot vs Pilot
Both Gehlot and Pilot were keen to be the chief minister of Rajasthan when the party won the assembly elections in 2018. But the Congress high command picked Gehlot for the top post for a third time.
In July 2020, Pilot and a section of Congress MLAs rebelled against Gehlot, demanding a change of leadership in the state. Pilot was then stripped of the posts of deputy chief minister and PCC president.
The month-long crisis ended after the Congress central leadership promised to look into the issues Pilot raised.
Gehlot later used terms like “gaddar” (traitor), “nakara” (failure) and “nikamma” (worthless) for Pilot and accused him of being involved with BJP in a bid to topple the Congress government.
(With agency inputs)