Jaipur: Ahead of 2023 Assembly elections in Rajasthan, the chinks in the armour of Congress's state unit once again came to the fore after its Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot called party colleague Sachin Pilot a ‘gaddar’ (traitor). He made these remarks during an interview to NDTV.
“A gaddar (traitor) cannot be chief minister... the Congress high command cannot make Sachin Pilot the chief minister... a man who doesn't have 10 MLAs. Who revolted. He betrayed the party, (he) is a traitor," Gehlot said.
The two leaders have long locked horns over the post of chief minister and the fissures in the Rajasthan Congress unit have widened at a time when Rahul Gandhi-led Bhrata Jodo Yatra is set to enter the state.
Senior Congress leader Sachin Pilot is in Madhya Pradesh and participating in the party;’s mass outreach programme. He walked along with Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi in Bhrata Jodo Yatra as it resumed from Borgaon village this morning. Pilot did not comment on Gehlot’s remark.
Claiming that Sachin Pilot rebelled against the Congress party, Gehlot told NDTV that he has proof that an amount of Rs 10 crore was paid to eac of those MLAs who were loyal to Pilot. He added that Union Home Minister and Senior BJP leader Amit Shah was involved in Pilot’s rebellion against the grand old party. He also said he would step down from the chief minister’s post if Congress finds an able administrator among the 102 MLs other than Pilot.
“The MLAs will never accept someone who has revolted and has been dubbed as a gaddar. How can he become the chief minister? How can the MLAs accept such a person as the chief minister? I have proof that Rs 10 crore each were distributed to the MLAs holed up in a Gurugram resort for toppling the Congress government in Rajasthan,” Gehlot added.