In an unprecedented incident, Congress MLAs backing Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot were seen demonstrating outside the Raj Bhavan, the official residence of the Governor. Despite the fact that Gehlot and Governor Kalraj Mishra already had a meeting between over the issue of ‘commencement of Assembly session’. The Congress supporters were heard shouting slogans such as ‘This autocracy will not be allowed’, ‘justice is our war cry’, and ‘we are with Ashok Gehlot.’
#WATCH Rajasthan: Congress MLAs supporting Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot sit and raise slogans at Raj Bhawan.— ANI (@ANI) July 24, 2020
The Chief Minister had met Governor Kalraj Mishra this afternoon over the issue of the convening of the Assembly Session. pic.twitter.com/m6XhwwMuM2
Ashok Gehlot threatens mass uprising
Earlier, in a press briefing, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot urged Governor Kalraj Mishra to commence the Assembly session in order to allow discussion on the rising cases of Wuhan Coronavirus and the current political conundrum in the State. Gehlot, who also has the home ministry, effectively said that if the governor does not comply with their demands, the public will surround the Raj Bhawan and then it will not be his responsibility.
“We will request you to not bow down to any pressure. It’s a constitutional post. You have taken the oath (to uphold the Constitution. Take a decision on the basis of the constitution. If you don’t comply, then it is possible that a mass uprising can take place. And if people gherao Raj Bhavan, then it won’t be our responsibility,” Ashok Gehlot warned.
#WATCH: “We are going to the Governor to request him to not come under pressure (and call Assembly session)… varna fir ho sakta hai ki pure pradesh ki janta agar Raj Bhawan ko gherne ke liye aagai, to hamari zimmedari nahi hogi,” says Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot https://t.co/2UaH94tTrB pic.twitter.com/ODEq7PZGei— ANI (@ANI) July 24, 2020
Governor Kalraj Mishra had earlier met Gehlot and has also interacted with the protesting MLAs.
Political crisis in Rajasthan
The divide with Rajasthan government became public after former Deputy CM Sachin Pilot moved to Delhi with a group of MLAs, claiming that the Gehlot government has lost majority. As the speculations of government collapse grew louder, Gehlot had over his loyal MLAs to the Fairmont Hotel in Jaipur.
On July 14, the Congress party sacked the rebel Congress leader Sachin Pilot from the post of Deputy Chief Minister of the state for allegedly conspiring to topple the government, in collusion with the BJP. The rebel leader has recently moved the Rajasthan High Court challenging the disqualification notices issued to them by the state Assembly speaker on the behest of the State CM. Earlier, Ashok Gehlot had also mocked Pilot for being “nikamma and nakaara’ (useless) and revealed that the duo had not been on talking terms for 1.5 years.