JAIPUR: All bumpy roads in Rajasthan politics seemed to lead to a floor test late Thursday as CM Ashok Gehlot met governor Kalraj Mishra for the second time in six days, hours after hinting that a special assembly session would be convened soon for his government to prove it is stable and able.
“We have a full majority and are united, so (we are) staying here,” Gehlot said. He suggested that some among the dissident MLAs in sacked deputy CM Sachin Pilot’s camp, too, might vote for him.
“They are being forcefully kept in a (Haryana) hotel guarded by bouncers. They are making phone calls to say they want to return, but can’t. I hope many of them, when they come, will vote for us.” Gehlot claimed that the dissident MLAs had been “misled into making the mistake of going to court”.
With the Pilot camp filing an application on Wednesday for the Union to be made party to the case, it is unlikely that the HC will give its verdict as scheduled on Friday.“ …the matter has now been listed in the category of ‘reply not filed’.
The court may grant time to the Union to submit a reply,” the Speaker’s counsel, Prateek Kasliwal, said. On whether the political crisis had now triggered a constitutional conflict, Gehlot said, “It should be avoid ed. We respect the judiciary and never interfere in its functioning. (But) you know, complaints keep coming from the executive and the legislature that many bills get stalled by the judiciary.”
Sources said the Gehlot government was considering bringing a bill and issuing a whip to its MLAs. This, they said, was being seen as a possible alternative to a direct trust vote. Awhip would make it mandatory for the dissident legislators to attend the assembly or face disqualification. The government would prefer disqualification of rebels before going for a trust vote so that the majority mark in the 200-member house gets reduced.


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