Ten months after leading a rebellion along with 19 dissident MLAs, Sachin Pilot has once again raised his voice. Pilot was waiting for the lockdown in the state to end to demand the rehabilitation of his group.
Notably, the development comes at a time when former Union minister and a close aide of Rahul Gandhi, Jitin Prasada, dumped the Congress on Wednesday and joined the BJP ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections scheduled next year.
The 2020 rebellion
Last year in July, Pilot and the dissidents had revolted against Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. This led to a crisis in the party and brought the Gehlot government to the brink of collapse. But timely intervention by Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, and Priyanka Gandhi, who promised Pilot and dissidents justice, led to a ceasefire.
The party’s high command formed a three-member committee to hear the grievances of Pilot and others. This committee was headed by the late Ahmed Patel, with KC Venugopal and Ajay Maken as members. The committee heard only Pilot in two meetings, but it never submitted its report. Eventually, it became defunct after the death of Patel due to COVID-19.
Sachin Pilot demanding rehabilitation of dissidents
Now, Pilot has demanded his and other dissidents’ rehabilitation from the Congress high command. He has cited the case of Punjab where the dissidents led by Navjot Singh Sidhu were given a hearing by the high command within 15 days.
Pilot has been demanding that the party workers who worked hard to bring back the party to power in 2018 should be honoured. The chief minister has not completed political appointments and the delay even after two-and-half years since the party came to power has led to annoyance in the cadre.
Jitendra Singh supports Sachin Pilot
Former Union minister Jitendra Singh, who is also the AICC general secretary for Assam, has come in support of Pilot and demanded that he should be heard by the party. Jitendra Singh, however, said there was no need for a change of chief minister in the state, but the political appointments should be made without any delay.
Hemaram Choudhary’s resignation
One of the dissident, Hemaram Choudhary had tendered his resignation on May 18 from Vidhan Sabha. His resignation is pending before the Speaker as he did not resign in person according to the Assembly membership rules.
Choudhary, a veteran politician, resigned because the state budget did not make any budgetary allocations for his constituency Gudamalani in the Barmer district. Later, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot sanctioned Rs 1,400 crore for various development works in Barmer. However, Choudhary did not withdraw his resignation.
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