JAIPUR: AICC general secretary Ajay Maken and Mallikarjun Kharge who were sent to Jaipur to convene the Congress Legislative Party (CLP) meeting and decide the new CM of Rajasthan did not pull any punches when it came to decrying the MLAs' rebellion.
The two observers returned to Delhi on Monday afternoon after pro-Gehlot MLAs refused to meet them and instead held a parallel meeting at the residence of Urban Development and Housing Minister Shanti Dhariwal on Sunday.
The two AICC observers said the Gehlot camp's defiance 'could be termed as indiscipline'.
"Yes, this is indiscipline, when one official meeting has been called and parallel to it another meeting is called, then it is termed as indiscipline. We will see what action will be taken against it," said Maken, the Rajasthan in-charge of the Congress, to mediapersons.
State in-charge Ajay Maken said that the CLP meeting was called after asking CM Gehlot and only after his consent. "We were continuously telling the MLAs of Gehlot faction that we will listen to them one to one and will put their demands before the party high command. But Gehlot camp MLAs did not reach the meeting," he said.
"We had told them their point would be heard seriously and placed before Sonia Gandhi, after which Sonia Gandhi would have taken a decision only after asking Ashok Gehlot," he added.
Ajay Maken said that three ministers Shanti Dhariwal, Mahesh Joshi and Pratap Singh Khachariyawas had come to them as representatives.
They placed "three conditions in front of us. The first condition was that Sachin Pilot should not be made the Chief Minister, the second condition was that the meeting of the Congress Legislature Party should be called only after October 19 and the third condition was that the 102 MLAs had played an important role in saving the government and only one of them should be made the Chief Minister."
Maken said, "MLAs of the Gehlot camp had demanded to add their conditions in the proposal, which is not correct. It has never happened in the history of Congress that conditions should be added to the proposal. The proposal comes from a single line and after that the party high command gives the seal of approval on that proposal."
Ajay Maken said that "Gehlot himself is contesting the election of the national president, so it would have been agreed later that such a proposal should be brought."
In-charge Ajay Maken said they will prepare a report mentioning that both the names of MLAs who have resigned and those who did not attend the meeting, and submit it to Sonia Gandhi.
Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot met Kharge at the hotel. Before leaving for Delhi, Kharge said that "everyone will have to be on the same page with Congress President's decision.There has to be unity and discipline in the state party unit."