Tuesday, August 11, 2020
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Police stopped my car, took my keys away: BTP MLA from Rajasthan says he is being forcefully stopped from going anywhere

BTP party chief Mahesh Vasava had issued a notice to his MLAs yesterday and had asked them to remain neutral, that is not to support either Congress or BJP in the case a floor test happens in the assembly.

Amidst the political drama in Rajasthan and rumours of a minority government trying to save its MLAs, an MLA from Rajasthan has claimed that he is facing a hostage like situation in the state. Rajkumar Roat, the Bharatiya Tribal Party (BTP) MLA from the Chorasi constituency has claimed that he is being witheld forcefully by the state police.

“Due to the current political situation in Rajasthan, we are in a hostage situation. It’s been 3 days since we were lodged at the MLA quarters. Several people pestered us to go with them (to the resort). I am being followed by 3-4 police cars. I have come to visit my constituency. But, they are not allowing me to go. My car is surrounded by police vehicles on all sides. My car keys have been taken. We are being ill-treated here,” the MLA was heard as saying.

BTP’s instructions to its MLAs

It is notable here that MLAs supporting the Ashok Gehlot government were taken to a Jaipur resort yesterday after Sachin Pilot claimed that the government has lost the majority in the state. Bharatiya Tribal part has 2 MLAs in the assembly.

However, the party chief Mahesh Vasava had issued a notice to his MLAs yesterday and had asked them to remain neutral, that is not to support either Congress or BJP in the case a floor test happens in the assembly.

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Roat claiming that he has been trying to go but is being restricted further adds fuel to the drama and speculations that Gehlot may not have the numbers he has been claiming.

CM Ashok Gehlot has the home ministry portfolio in Rajatshan and the police department reports to him. Yesterday, FIRs against Sachin Pilot were filed too.

Political crisis in Rajasthan

Speculations are rife that Rajasthan government may go the Madhya Pradesh way as the infighting between Congress leaders continue and Sachin Pilot reached Delhi on Saturday along with 20-25 Congress and independent MLAs. Following the 2018 Rajasthan Assembly elections, a power tussle ensued between Congress old guard Ashok Gehlot and youth leader Sachin pilot for the coveted post of the Chief Minister. Eventually, Gehlot was made the CM, and Pilot was sidelined. The divide between the two factions, within the State government, seemed to have widened over time. The rebel Congress leader has told Ashok Gehlot that ‘majority’ has to be proven on the floor of the House and not in the back garden of Gehlot’s residence. Sachin Pilot stated, “If they have numbers as claimed, then, why not do a headcount? Take them to the Governor instead of moving them to the hotel.”

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