BSP leader Mayawati (File photo)
NEW DELHI: Minutes after Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati waded into the Rajasthan phone tapping controversy and demanded that President’s Rule be imposed in the state, the Congress launched a frontal attack on the Dalit leader.
The Congress said she was a “majboor neta (helpless leader)”, who had to, as a result of “certain compulsions, fears and helplessness”, make such comments “to help the BJP.”
Mayawati’s anger against Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot has been simmering since all six BSP MLAs who won the Rajasthan assembly elections in 2018 abandoned Mayawati’s BSP and merged with Congress party.
Doubling down in their criticism of the BJP and dismissing BSP’s belated entry into the brewing political crises in Rajasthan, Congress spokesperson Pawan Khera said, “There is little to say about Mayawati ji because she is a “majboor neta”. She has certain compulsions, fears and helplessness, which force her to come out with such comments to help the BJP.”
Khera also alleged that the BJP had in fact “confessed” in its press conference on Saturday morning that corruption and horse trading had, indeed, taken place in Rajasthan. “There has been daylight murder of democracy in Rajasthan. BJP accepted that corruption and horse trading happened, but they only had a problem with why this was recorded and whether the process was legal,” he said.
Congress also alleged the BJP government in Haryana’s intervention to prevent the Rajasthan police’s special operation group from taking voice samples of rebel Congress MLAs Vishvendra Singh Bharatpur and Bhanwar Lal Sharma, who were purportedly a part of the leaked audio tapes.
“It is interesting that the MLAs have not complained of phone tapping but the BJP has. Also, why, if the BJP is not involved, was the Rajasthan SOG prevented from taking voice samples of the MLAs and why were they whisked out of the Manesar resort from a rear gate,” Khera asked.
Even as the Rajasthan political drama showed now signs of settling down and Congress maintained the doors were open both for Sachin Pilot and the 18 rebel Congress legislators, the grand old party also pointed to gaping holes in Pilot’s not-with-BJP theory on grounds that he and the rebel MLAs were enjoying the “comfort and hospitality” of the BJP government in Haryana. Khera also said Congress had heard that the BJP was now planning to take the rebels to Karnataka.
“Great organisations don’t see people as a commodity to be managed to help grow their money, they think of money as a commodity to be managed to help grow their people”