The Rajasthan police have issued notices to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot to appear before them in connection with the alleged attempts to topple their Congress government.
According to the reports, the Rajasthan police’s special operations group (SOG) issued notice to Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot to record their statements in a case connected with the attempts made to topple the Ashok Gehlot led Congress government by breaking away Congress party in Rajasthan.
The special operations group (SOG) has also sent a notice to Government Chief Whip Mahesh Joshi. The notices came after the SOG had arrested two people for their alleged involvement in horse-trading of Congress MLAs for toppling the Ashok Gehlot government.
The Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had claimed that attempts were being made to destabilise his government ahead of Rajya Sabha elections for two seats last month. An inquiry was launched after the government chief whip had filed complaints with the SOG and ACB.
Rajasthan SOG registers FIR against two in connection with the case
On Friday, the SOG had registered the FIR on the basis of conversation between two individuals who indicated that efforts were being made to poach ruling party MLAs. The case has been registered under sections 124A (sedition) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC.
The FIR stated that SOG had taken two numbers on surveillance to check smuggling of illegal weapons and explosive substances.
“From the conversation on these numbers, it appears that attempts are being made to topple the government, and preparations were completed before the Rajya Sabha elections. In the conversation, it is said that Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister are having a fight; in such a situation, the ruling party MLAs and independent MLAs can be broken away to topple the government and a new CM will be put in place,” read the FIR.
The FIR also highlighted how the plans were made to destabilize the government keeping Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot in the centre. The FIR read, “But BJP says that CM will be our person and Deputy CM will be made a minister in the Central government while the Deputy CM says that he will be the CM – this has also appeared on the conversations.”
Citing Sachin Pilot’s Delhi visit ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections, one of the accused states in the conversation that “big political decisions are being taken in Delhi and things will move quickly after June 30…that’s when his stars will shine and he will take an oath 5-10 days later.”
Congress MLAs were offered Rs 25 crore to switch sides: FIR
The men in the audio allegedly also discussed that by toppling the government, they can earn Rs 1,000 – Rs 2,000 crore, however, it only happened when the CM is as per their wish.
Further, the FIR also alleged that it has also come to know that a BJP leader was trying to lure Independent MLA from Kushalgarh in Banswara, Ramila Khadiya, with money. The telephonic conversations allegedly are also revealed that Mahendra Jeet Singh Malviya, who is a Congress MLA from Bagidora in Banswara was also a target.
The two men allegedly conversed that Malviya was earlier with Deputy CM but has changed paala (sides) to join Ashok Gehlot. The SOG has also claimed that through its sources it has come to know that Rs 20-25 crore were also being offered to Congress and independent MLAs.
The Rajasthan police also added that as the CM took MLAs to a resort ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections, the two accused stated that their Rs 25 crore plan has failed. However, money was still being offered to MLAs, especially independent MLAs as recently as two days ago.
The FIR said that the conversations “make it clear that efforts are being made to purchase Congress and independent MLAs” through a feeling of hatred towards a “democratically elected government”.
The Congress-led government in Rajasthan enjoys the support of 107 MLAs out of the 200 members. The Ashok Gehlot-led government has the support of independent MLAs and legislators of other parties like Rashtriya Lok Dal, CPI (M) and Bhartiya Tribal Party (BTP).