Congress leader and Rajasthan in-charge Ajay Maken arrives at Jaipur International Airport to attend Congress MLA meeting in Jaipur on Sunday, September 25, 2022.
Congress leader and Rajasthan in-charge Ajay Maken arrives at Jaipur International Airport to attend Congress MLA meeting in Jaipur on Sunday, September 25, 2022. Ravishankar Vyas/IANS

Gehlot camp not in favour of Pilot as CM, says Maken

Jaipur, September 26, 2022

Congress leader Ajay Maken, who was in Jaipur along with Mallikarjun Kharge to convene the CLP meeting for deciding the new Chief Ministerial face, on Monday said three members from the Ashok Gehlot camp had met them with three proposals, which they did not accept as it raised conflict of interest.

Talking to media persons, Maken said Shanti Dhariwal, Mahesh Joshi and Pratap Khachriyawas, representing Chief Minister Gehlot's camp, visited him on Sunday night with three proposals and had said "a strict no for Sachin Pilot as the new CM".

"In their first proposal, they said if you want to pass a resolution that the Congress high command should be allowed to take a final decision, then pass it after October 19.

"We told them that this raises conflict of interest as, if Gehlot is elected as the Congress president, this proposal will empower him further after October 19 and there can be no bigger conflict of interest than this.

"Secondly, when we told them that we wanted to talk to each of them in person, they said 'we will talk in groups'. We categorically told them that this has been the Congress practice to take feedback from each leader and we will do the same, but they insisted on coming in groups and further insisted that 'you will have to publicly announce this'.

"Thirdly, they said that the CM should be picked from the 102 MLAs who were loyal during the rebellion, and not from the Pilot group.

"We said that we will have one-on-one interaction with each MLA and then will give feedback to Sonia Gandhi to convey their exact feelings to her. She will talk to Gehlot and then the final decision will be taken.

"However, the three of them insisted that these three points should be part of the resolution. We waited for them to return with some suggestions on Sunday night, but they did not come.

"Now, we are leaving today and will present the report to Sonia Gandhi," said Maken.

The Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting, which was called on Sunday at Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot's residence, was cancelled as more than 90 Congress MLAs loyal to Gehlot threatened to resign, while demanding that the new CM face be picked from their group.

IANS

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