The Congress has asked its Rajasthan leaders to refrain from making statements against each other or disciplinary action will be taken.
In a letter, party general secretary K C Venugopal said, “we are noticing statements of Congress leaders in Rajasthan regarding the party’s internal matters and against other leaders. It is advised that all Congress leaders at any level should refrain from making public statements against other leaders or about the party’s internal matters.”
“Strict disciplinary action will be initiated under the provisions of the constitution of the Indian National Congress if any violation of this advisory is made,” it said.
The advisory comes in the wake of Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot meeting party interim president Sonia Gandhi. He later said that he will not contest the Congress presidential poll and the issue of the Rajasthan chief minister will be decided by her.
Gehlot said, “In this environment I don’t want to contest and the issue of chief ministership will be decided by the party high command. Whether I remain the CM will be decided by Madam (Sonia Gandhi)… I am a loyal soldier of the Congress from Indiraji’s time. I have expressed regret and sadness over whatever happened in Jaipur.”
The Congress on Tuesday served show-cause notices to Rajasthan Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal, party chief whip Mahesh Joshi and RTDC chairman Dharmendra Rathore for holding a parallel meeting of party legislators in Jaipur.
The notice issued to Dhariwal said that he, being Parliamentary Affairs Minister, has committed “grave indiscipline” by hosting a parallel MLAs meeting at his residence and thus “pressuring MLAs not to attend the official meeting”.
“As Parliamentary Affairs Minister, hosting the unofficial meeting confused the Congress MLAs as to which one was convened officially,” the notice reads. The notice has sought a response within 10 days and also noted that Dhariwal’s action (parallel meeting) came even when senior party leader Mallikarjun Kharge and Rajasthan in-charge Ajay Maken repeatedly clarified that they have come to speak to each MLA “individually and impartially” and report to Congress president Sonia Gandhi.