Sachin Pilot To skip Congress likely to Meet BJP Chief
Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, who has declared an open revolt against the Congress with the support of 30 MLAs that could bring down the Ashok Gehlot government, is likely to meet with BJP chief JP Nadda on Monday, sources said.
Mr Pilot, who is camping in Delhi after setting his party up for another state collapse just three months after it lost Madhya Pradesh to the BJP, has refused to attend a key meeting of Congress MLAs called by Mr Gehlot on Monday.
Instead, he is likely to meet with JP Nadda and any future course of action will be decided after the meeting, sources said, indicating that Mr Pilot may be on the brink of crossing over.
The BJP has been in a “wait and watch” mode over the unfolding crisis in the Congress in Rajasthan and will wait for the outcome of the show of strength between Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and his deputy Sachin Pilot before deciding on its next course of action, party sources had earlier said on Sunday.
Mr Gehlot has called a meeting of Congress MLAs on Monday, which is likely to give a clear indication of how much support he and Pilot enjoy in the legislative group.
Mr Pilot, who is also the Rajasthan Congress president, is said to be in touch with some BJP leaders but sources in the party declined to comment on whether it has held any discussion with him.
The Congress leader’s aides do not deny a dialogue with the BJP though they say negotiations are not active.
A BJP leader said the rebel Congress leader seems to have “made up his mind” and does not look in any mood to reconcile with Mr Gehlot’s leadership.
A statement released on Mr Pilot’s team claimed that the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government in Rajasthan is in minority now.
In the last one year, the BJP has come to power in states like Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka through defection by MLAs from the Congress and other rival parties.
Former Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia was instrumental in toppling the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh and he joined the BJP with his supporters later.
Mr Scindia and Mr Pilot have long shared a warm personal rapport, and the former on Sunday tweeted in support of the Rajasthan leader with a swipe at the Congress.