Congress accuses BJP of horse-trading in Rajasthan; suspends its 2 MLAs

Party cites audio tapes to accuse two of its own MLAs and Union minister of horse-trading to topple the Ashok Gehlot government

Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service
New Delhi, July 17

In a murky turn of events in the Rajasthan Congress crisis on Friday, the party cited some audio tapes to accuse two of its own lawmakers and union minister Gajendra Shekhawat of horse-trading to topple the Ashok Gehlot government and demanded an FIR against the Union Water Resources Minister.

The Congress also suspended two MLAs, Bhawarlal Sharma and Vishvendra Singh, from the primary membership of the party subject to investigation into the tapes by the special operations group constituted in the state for the purpose.

Congress media in-charge Randeep Surjewala released alleged conversations between Shekhawat and Congress MLAs and demanded that Shekhawat be booked, and if necessary, even arrested for the attempts to “conspire to destabilise the stage government”.


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The BJP was quick to dismiss the matter with state unit chief Satish Poonia saying, “What can anyone say when the Chief Minister’s Office becomes the centre of circulation of fake news. These are malicious attempts at character assassination, and the Congress can’t put its own house in order.”

Surjewala said the Congress had demanded a probe into the tapes saying party’s chief whip in the state Mahesh Joshi had written to the police to take cognisance of the matter.

The fast- paced developments come hours before the Rajasthan High Court is to hear petitions of rebel Congress MLAs led by Sachin Pilot challenging the disqualification notices issued to them by speaker CP Joshi under the anti-defection law.

Pilot and company have challenged the constitutional validity of these notices and all eyes are now on the HC.

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