Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Monday termed his former deputy Sachin Pilot as “nikamma” (useless) and “nakara” (incompetent) and accused him of conspiring with the BJP for the past six months to topple the government in the state.
“Pichle saat salon me koi bhi aisa nahi milega jisne maang ki ho ki Pilot sahab ko hatana chahie Pradesh Congress Committee adhyaksh se. Hume pata tha vo Nikamma hai, Nakara hai. Kuch kaam nahi kar raha hai. Khali logon ko ladwa raha hai (In the past seven years, you won’t find anyone in the party who demanded the removal of Pilot as PCC president even though we knew he was useless, good for nothing and that he wasn’t doing anything except making people fight among themselves),” Gehlot told reporters here.
The Chief Minister said Sachin Pilot has a ‘masoom’ (innocent) face and has a strong command on Hindi and English language, with which he had impressed the media across the country. “The people of the state know his contribution. However, we never questioned him in the interest of the party,” he said.
Gehlot further added, “He was conspiring for the past six months with BJP’s support. Nobody believed me when I used to say that conspiracy is going on to topple the government. Nobody knew that a person with such an innocent face will do such a thing.”
He claimed that the MLAs in Sachin Pilot’s faction are being held captive.
“Our MLAs are staying without any restrictions but they have held their MLAs captive. They are calling us and crying over the phone while explaining their ordeal. Their mobile phones have been snatched. Some of them want to join us,” Gehlot said.
This comes even as Rajasthan Congress continues to remain in turmoil after simmering differences between Pilot and Gehlot came out in the open.
Pilot was, on July 14, sacked from the posts of Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister and state PCC president. Gehlot has blamed the BJP for attempting to destabilise the state government by poaching MLAs.
Rajasthan Assembly Speaker CP Joshi had sent notices to Pilot and 18 MLAs under the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution, popularly known as the anti-defection law after chief’s whip application for their disqualification.
However, the disqualification notice was challenged by Sachin Pilot and MLAs from his faction in the Rajasthan High Court, which is hearing the matter.