Here is a look at the top developments —
Have written to President, spoken with PM on current political situation in Rajasthan: CM to Cong MLAs
Chief minister Ashok Gehlot has written to President Ram Nath Kovind and spoken with Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the current political situation in the state.
Gehlot had also written a letter to the Prime Minister on the matter a few days ago.
“The chief minister told that he has spoken to the prime minister and apprised him of the current political situation in the state,” a Congress leader said after a meeting at a hotel where MLAs are holed up following rebellion by Sachin Pilot against the Gehlot government.
We’re astonished & anguished by the attitude of the governor: P Chidambaram
The governor is only a formal instrument to sign and issue summons to the MLAs. If a chief minister who is accused of not enjoying a majority wants to prove his majority, is entitled to call a session at the earliest to prove his majority. We’re astonished and anguished by the attitude of the governor of Rajasthan. We’re therefore protesting today before all Raj Bhawans in the country to highlight the gravity of the issue and draw people’s attention to violations of the Constitution: Congress leader P Chidambaram
Governor orders government to call assembly session
Rajasthan governor Kalraj Mishra has ordered the state government to call for an assembly session.
“Not convening the assembly was never the intention,” a statement from Raj Bhawan, Rajasthan said.
Rajasthan governor asks the state government to deliberate on three aspects —
- A 21-day notice period before convening session,
- maintaining social distancing norms and
- certain conditions to be followed, in case confidence motion is moved.
HC dismisses BJP plea against merger of 6 BSP MLAs with Congress
The Rajasthan HC on Monday dismissed BJP MLA Madan Dilawar’s writ petition against the merger of six Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) MLAs with Congress. Congress MLA Ramnarayan Meena had earlier in the day announced that the six BSP MLAs have joined Congress and are recognised by the Speaker. Monday’s development came a day after, the BSP chief Mayawati had on Sunday issued a whip to its six MLAs directing them to vote against the Congress in any no-confidence motion or any proceedings to be held during Rajasthan Assembly session.
Violating BSP’s whip, when on Monday Congress announced that BSP MLAs are now part of Congress, the Mayawati-led party also moved the Rajasthan HC seeking to become a party in the petition filed by the BJP against the merger of six BSP MLAs in the state with the Congress party.
No Rajasthan assembly session, Governor seeks more clarification
Governor Kalraj Mishra on Monday returned the file sent by the state government which requested him to allow the special assembly session in the state. This was the second time the state government had sent a file to the Governor to get approval on its proposal to call a special assembly session quoting COVID as reasons for discussion. In the file sent back to the Department of Parliamentary Affairs of the Rajasthan government, the Raj Bhawan office has sought more information from the government.
Mishra has asked the government ‘Do you want to move Motion of Confidence? It is not mentioned in the proposal but you have been speaking about it in media’,” a source told ANI. According to sources, Mishra also said it will be difficult to call all the MLAs for the Assembly Session in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Can you consider giving a 21-day notice over the convening of Assembly Session?,” the Governor asked the Rajasthan government, according to sources.
Ex-law ministers urge Raj governor to convene assembly
In a letter to Rajasthan Governor Kalraj Mishra, senior Congress leaders and former law ministers Ashwani Kumar, Kapil Sibal and Salman Khurshid have said the governor’s office, as envisaged under the country’s constitutional scheme, is above and beyond the constraints and compulsions of partisan politics, “so that its holder can act freely and fairly to uphold the Constitution”. “Any deviation from the established constitutional position in the present circumstances would be an avoidable negation of your oath of office and will create a constitutional crisis,” the former law ministers said in the letter.
Rajasthan Cong MLAs hold prayer meet to ‘save democracy, Constitution’
The Rajasthan Congress legislators held a prayer meeting on Monday under the “save democracy, save Constitution” programme in the hotel where they are holed up in Jaipur. Chief minister Ashok Gehlot, AICC general secretary Avinash Pande and other leaders participated in the meeting. The party was earlier scheduled to hold a protest outside the Raj Bhawan in Jaipur, but it was called off Sunday.
Congress leaders detained in UP, Gujarat, Delhi
Five persons led by Uttar Pradesh Congress President Ajay Kumar Lallu and Rajya Sabha MP PL Punia on Monday attempted to stage a dharna in front of the Raj Bhavan in Lucknow, but were whisked away by police. Similarly, Nearly 60 Congress workers and leaders were detained by police Monday when they marched towards the Raj Bhavan in Gandhinagar to protest against the BJP over the political crisis in Rajasthan. Congress leaders in Delhi including state chief Anil Kumar were also detained while trying to march to the Lieutenant Governor’s office in Civil Lines.
Last week on Friday Congress MLAs had staged a five-hour dharna outside Raj Bhavan in Jaipur to demand governor Kalraj Mishra to convene an assembly session. They had retreated after talks. Taking cognisance of a potential law and order situation, Mishra amped up the political drama by meeting chief secretary and DGP to discuss security of Raj Bhavan on Sunday. Congress MLAs were planning to organise another dharna on Monday, however, it was called-off. Nonetheless, this is not stopping Congress leaders in other states from protesting against governor’s alleged “intentional delay” in convening Rajasthan assembly.
SC allows Rajasthan speaker to withdraw plea
The Supreme Court allowed the Rajasthan Assembly Speaker on Monday to withdraw his appeal against the high court’s order asking him to defer till July 24 the disqualification proceedings against sacked deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot and 18 dissident Congress MLAs.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Speaker C P Joshi, told a bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra that the Rajasthan High Court had passed a fresh order on Friday and they were weighing the legal options. While withdrawing the plea, Sibal told the bench that the appeal had become infructuous as the apex court did not stay the earlier high court order passed last Tuesday asking the Speaker to defer the disqualification proceedings till Friday.
(With inputs from agencies)