HomeIndiaState Congress MLAs will reach Delhi if Ashok Gehlot files nomination: Rajasthan...

State Congress MLAs will reach Delhi if Ashok Gehlot files nomination: Rajasthan Minister

Ashok Gehlot called an informal late night meeting of Rajasthan MLAs ahead of his Delhi tour

Ashok Gehlot called an informal late night meeting of Rajasthan MLAs ahead of his Delhi tour

amid the news of being Congress leader in presidential electionRajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot is expected to meet sitting party president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday, before leaving for Kerala to join Rahul Gandhi. india couple travel,

Mr. Gehlot called an informal meeting of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) in Jaipur at 10 pm on Tuesday. Party legislators, who were present at a dinner function to honor Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar, were asked to stop for the meeting.

Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Speaker CP Joshi during a felicitation ceremony at the state assembly in Jaipur, Tuesday, September 20, 2022.

Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Speaker CP Joshi during a felicitation ceremony at the state assembly in Jaipur, Tuesday, September 20, 2022. photo credit: PTI

State Food and Civil Supplies Minister Pratap Singh Khachariawas said that Mr. Gehlot told the Congress MLAs at the meeting that they would be asked to come to New Delhi if they decide to file nominations for the party president’s election.

After the meeting, the state cabinet minister told reporters, “The chief minister said that if he files nomination for the party’s national president post, the MLAs will get a message to reach New Delhi.” He said there was no anti-incumbency wave in the state and the chief minister was not far from the people.

So far, the chief minister of Rajasthan has been giving mixed signals about taking over the top post of the party as it may mean that he should be given up the chief minister’s post.

It is well known that Mr. Gehlot is against handing over the chief minister’s post to his former deputy and rival Sachin Pilot. Interestingly, the CLP meeting took place in the absence of Mr. Pilot, who left for Kerala to join india couple travel on Tuesday afternoon.

Though former party chief Rahul Gandhi is unlikely to change his mind about not contesting the election, Mr Gehlot is expected to make another effort to persuade him.

“The chief minister will first go to Kochi and urge Rahul Gandhi to contest for the post of party president,” the state cabinet minister said. Mr Gehlot is scheduled to visit Delhi, Kerala and Maharashtra and has directed the MLAs to ensure that the assembly runs smoothly, Mr Khachariyawas said.

The hectic political developments came a day after senior leader and Lok Sabha member Shashi Tharoor met Ms Gandhi. In the 40-minute meeting, the sources claimed, Ms Gandhi assured Mr Tharoor that the Gandhi family would be ‘neutral’ if there was a contest.

Mr Tharoor held his meeting with the party chief on Tuesday along with another meeting with Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

‘Anyone can contest’

On Tuesday, Ms Gandhi also met party general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal, who had flown in from Allappuzha to discuss organizational matters.

Anyone can contest the Congress president’s election which will be fair and transparent, Mr. Venugopal told reporters outside 10 Janpath, Ms. Gandhi’s official residence, after the meeting.

The Congress general secretary, however, tried to downplay the meeting and said it was a “routine” one to discuss the pending organizational matter with the party chief.

“Elections have been announced, what is the need for discussion? Notification will come on September 22 and nominations will start on September 24. We have said it will be an open election, anyone can contest, free and fair elections, of course it will be a transparent election.”

When asked about Mr. Tharoor contesting the election, he said, “Not only Shashi Tharoor, anyone who wants to contest, he can contest.”

However, two Lok Sabha members from Kerala, Kodikunnil Suresh and K. Muraleedharan said his vote would go to the one who accepts the primacy of the Nehru-Gandhi family.

“Anyway, we will vote only for those who recognize the primacy of the Nehru family,” Mr. Muraleedharan said.

During this, Jharkhand, Haryana And Goa on Tuesday joined seven other Pradesh Congress Committees (PCCs) that asked Mr Gandhi to take back the reins of the party.

“But nobody asked anyone to pass any resolution. There is enthusiasm among the workers of Congress party. Rahul Gandhi has not asked anyone to pass any resolution. The Congress president did not ask anyone,” said Jairam Ramesh, the party’s communications chief.

(with PTI inputs)

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