Senior BJP leader and former Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday, May 8, 2023, lashed out at Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot for his claim that she, along with two other BJP leaders, had helped him save his government during the rebellion in the ruling Congress in 2020. Ms. Raje said Mr. Gehlot’s claim was “outrageous and untrue”.
“Mr. Gehlot is telling a lie for fear of his defeat in this year’s Assembly election. Heaping praise on me is a big conspiracy... No one can humiliate me as much as Mr. Gehlot did in my life,” Ms. Raje said in a statement. She said the Chief Minister was creating fabricated stories to avoid the “historic defeat” to be faced by Congress in the 2023 Assembly polls, but his tricks would not be successful.
Ms. Raje took exception to Mr. Gehlot’s charge that Union Home Minister Amit Shah had paid crores of rupees to the rebel Congress MLAs for toppling his government in 2020. “He has accused Mr. Shah, whose honesty and integrity is well known,” she said.
“Both giving and accepting the bribe are offences. If their MLAs have taken money, a first information report should be registered [against them] for the crime,” Ms. Raje said, while affirming that the mass base of Congress was dwindling and the party was constantly facing rebellion.
“As far as the horse-trading is concerned, Mr. Gehlot himself is an expert in this domain. He did it in the 2008 and 2018 [elections], when Congress was in a minority and he had formed the government by arranging the MLAs through len-den [sale and purchase],” Ms. Raje said.
The former Chief Minister said neither the BJP nor the Congress had obtained majority in both these elections. “Had we wanted, we too could have formed the government, but it was against the principles of BJP,” she said.