Rajasthan Governor teach Gehlot a lesson on Constitution


(MS Shanker)

Is the decision of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot to storm the Raj Bhavan, raise slogans against Governor and even try to gherao him demanding to convene an assembly session?  What prompted him to take this extreme step?   Has he felt of being cornered in both the courts – Supreme Court and state High Court – over his government’s ‘fool-hardy’ attempt to retaliate against his own MLAs, who raised banner of revolt against him under the leadership of deputy chief minister and party’s state unit president Sachin Pilot?  Was it not true that he himself has to hold responsibility for the creating crisis although enjoyed a comfortable majority in the state assembly?  Can he deny the fact that his bête noir within the party Sachin Pilot become a ‘thorn in flesh’ fearing the latter may expose his wrong doings as chief minister?  What he has to say on the mutl-crore fertilizer scam involving his own brother and son, besides other money-laundering scams, which are out in public domain, thanks to some media houses exposes?

These and many other related questions the Rajasthan Chief Minister needs to answer to his own state people.  And, his decision of storming the Raj Bhavan and hold out a threat demanding Governor to convene an emergency session of assembly, in fact, bound boomerang in coming days.  Already, the apex court, in unequivocal terms made it clear to his Speaker’s counsel that ‘dissent’ cannot be construed as anti-party activity in any democratic set up.  Another faux pas that Gehlot camp has done is misreading of the ‘whip’.  In fact, party ‘whip’ is issued only on the floor of the assembly and it cannot be maintainable for other party meetings outside the assembly.  Hence, the decision of the Speaker to disqualify the 19 MLAs, including Sachin Pilot, is the biggest blunder that Gehlot camp has committed.   Moreover, an internationally reputed legal brain like Harish Salve wouldn’t have accept to represent the Congress rebels case led by Sachin Pilot.  Why Harish Salve, even Mukul Rohtagi, who served as Attorney-General of India, would have!

Meanwhile, a seasoned politician turned Constitutional head holding the office of Governor, Kalraj Mehta, refusing to buckle to the pressures of Gehlot camp made abundantly clear the agitating MLAs, who dare to sit-in in the lawns and shout slogans; “None can dare pressurize me.  I go by the Constitution. “He later in a letter to the Chief Minister made it clear that you have not mentioned when the Cabinet meeting was held and the decision to convened assembly was taken (no minutes of the meeting).  Moreover, to convened an assembly session you have given 21 day notice.  That apart, you (Gehlot) have also not mentioned valid reasons to hold emergency session of assembly.  In that backdrop, the Governor asked; “where is the need or hurry to convene assembly session?  Who asked you to prove your majority?”

Certainly, none in the Gehlot camp or even his leadership in New Delhi have any answers to the genuine questions raised by the Governor.

The Supreme Court is expected to hear and give verdict on the petition filed by the Sachin Pilot’s rebel group challenging the Speaker’s decision to disqualify them.   They continue to claim that they have done nothing wrong against the party and were only demanding for the removal of their corrupt leader Ashok Gehlot as the chief minister.  The apex court, which told the defence counsel that the subject needs further examination.

Added to the Gehlot’s guffaw, the party leadership too seems to have taken advantage of the situation to get eliminated rid off challengers to PM-in-waiting Rahul Gandhi like Sachin Pilot.  The party has already lost another seasoned young leader, Aditya Scindia.  He also revolted against Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath and brought down his government.  Though, Sachin Pilot, as of now claim he had no intentions to leave the party, who knows that he too will not change his mind, if he succeed in his mission to dislodge Gehlot government in Rajasthan?