Gehlot’s dinner diplomacy to convey ‘all is well’ in Raj

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot hosted a dinner for the Congress MLAs at his official residence to give a message that ‘all is well’ in the party soon after the Rajasthan in-charge Ajay Maken completed his interaction round with the party MLAs to evaluate performance of ministers in the state.

The dinner was hosted on Thursday night.

The two-day one-on-one interaction round was aimed to break the ice between the two camps being led by Gehlot and former deputy CM Sachin Pilot.

Surprisingly, Pilot, being in Delhi, was absent in this so-called dinner diplomacy which did become a talk of the town. The CM, meanwhile, reiterated his call asking all the MLAs to forget and forgive the past and move ahead to develop the state.

This is the same message he gave last year after Pilot returned to the party fold after rebellion when veteran leaders, including Priyanka Gandhi Vadra interfered to balance equations in the state.

Addressing the meeting, Gehlot instructed all MLAs that in the next few months, they should get a directory published mentioning about the details of the development works being taken up in their area. The Chief Minister said that the government would not allow any shortfall in development works.

“You people will get tired making a demand, but I shall never get tired while giving,” he said.

Maken while addressing the meeting said that being an in-charge of the state, “I want to tell the Chief Minister that he should continue to get development work done in Rajasthan the same way he is doing.”

Many MLAs had complained about the poor working of senior ministers and leaders like state Congress chief Govind Singh Dotasara, Health Minister Raghu Sharma, Urban Development And Housing Minister Shanti Dhariwal and water supply and Energy Minister B.D. Kalla during the two-day interaction round.

A Congress MLA on the condition of anonymity advised Maken that the senior leaders should be given the role of a Margadarshak. Many MLAs asked Maken to remove the ministers whose report cards were not up to the mark or else the party might suffer in the coming polls.

Meanwhile, Dotasara and Dhariwal while addressing the MLAs at the Chief Minister’s residence attempted to show that all was well.

On Saturday, Maken would be speaking to the party’s state office bearers.

After evaluating the feedback of all MLAs, a report shall be submitted to the Congress high command, said sources.