Will Congress also implode in Rajasthan?

By the time poor Rahul Gandhi completes his so called Bharat Jodo Yatra, I don’t know how many other congressional state units will disintegrate like Goa. Rajasthan appears to be an imminent next.

The Congress family high command thought they would give a carrot of the post of party chairman to Ashok Gehlot thinking he would gladly bite into it and leave the post of Chief Minister of Rajasthan to Rahul Gandhi’s man, Sachin Pilot. Gehlot being too crafty for the family did not buy this so easily. He started to make people feel that one can be a party president and also a CM at the same time. It was later learned that Sonia Gandhi put her foot down and asked her to follow a man’s recent party decision for a post. Gehlot seemed to have accepted as a loyalist to Sonia Gandhi. However, as happens in typical politics, the “emotions” of Gehlot loyalists have suddenly increased and they do not want Gehlot to step down as CM. Typical Bollywood style footage.

Now the question Gehlot will ask Sonia Gandhi is that he has never cared about any position and will do whatever she wants him to do but she has to deal with disappointed MPs from Rajasthan near 90 of them according to claims, who threatened to resign. What a great way to be a winner anyway? It is now checkmate for Sonia Gandhi.

On the other side, Sachin Pilot would have seen himself so close to his dream job but was probably roughly shaken and woken up to face reality. The reality is that Gehlot won’t let him become CM so easily. The family high command must now choose between him and the deputies of Gehlot. He also knows that, like in Punjab, they will be powerless. They have to sacrifice him to save the government of Rajasthan.

It will now be very interesting to see what Sachin Pilot does next. It’s high time he made the uncomfortable decision. It is very clear that as long as Gehlot is not there at the helm, he has no political future in Rajasthan. Will the family make the difficult decision to go against Gehlot and his coterie and take his side? The chance of this happening is about 5%.

I am quite convinced that this time Sachin Pilot will not bow to some baseless promises of Rahul Gandhi, betting on the one he has been patiently waiting for for so long, tolerating the humiliation Gehlot inflicts on him. Either he will take his flock and join his friend, Jyotiraditya Scindia, who is today receiving all his due from the BJP, or he will go to the AAP who will promise to make him their sole king of Rajasthan. The AAP opportunity will be really tempting but Sachin still has to wait to develop, build the base and then think about becoming the CM. The BJP seems like a smarter choice, especially when that party is looking for a young face to take the reins from Vasundhara Raje. Sachin will have a clear trajectory there. Modi’s BJP is a party notorious for making tough decisions like in Madhya Pradesh by regularly positioning young Scindia to take over from Shivraj Singh Chauhan. Obviously, Sachin Pilot appears to be the up-and-coming Eknath Shinde in Rajasthan, if he can get around 35 MPs to support him and help the BJP form the government. If he can’t, it will still be good to join the BJP, build his base there and become CM in the next assembly elections. I can’t wait to see how it goes this time.

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Joan D. Boling