Senior Congress leader and All India Congress Committee (AICC) General Secretary Ajay Maken on November 22, said he resigned as in-charge of Rajasthan because of the confusion over the chief minister in the state.
In a conversation with Moneycontrol, Maken said, “On September 29, KC Venugopal had said Sonia Gandhi will make a decision on Rajasthan’s chief minister within two days. It’s been close to two months, no decision has been communicated.”
Maken said a greater responsibility was on him as general secretary and in charge of the state. “At the end, I will be held accountable by the party and leaders in the state,” he said.
It’s the confusion at various levels, because of which the party loses polls, added Maken.
His resignation comes in the backdrop of events in late September when Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot refused to leave his post to contest the party’s presidential election. Over 90 MLAs had refused to attend a meeting where Sachin Pilot’s name was supposed to be decided as Ashok Gehlot’s replacement.
The MLAs (Gehlot loyalists) went to the speaker and offered their resignation to mark their protest against the central leadership. MLAs were of the opinion that Gehlot should not resign as Rajasthan chief minister.
In his one-page resignation letter, Maken wrote: “Wedded to the ideology of Congress for the last three generations and being in active Congress politics for over 40 years, I will always remain an ardent follower of Rahul Ji, whom I trust and have faith in beyond words.”
Maken spoke of a plethora of issues ― from Bharat Jodo Yatra being led by Rahul Gandhi to MCD polls in Delhi and Assembly polls in Gujarat.
Bharat Jodo Yatra
The padyatra is certainly making an impact on the ground. People in lakhs have come out and supported Rahul Gandhi. The purpose of this march is to highlight the issues concerning everyone, such as unemployment, price rise, economy, and social issues. People are meeting him, discussing issues, and this shows the real outcome of the yatra, said Maken.
Asked whether he will be joining the yatra in Rajasthan after it completes the Madhya Pradesh leg, Maken said, “It will be decided later. There are observers, who are taking care of all the affairs. Presently, I am concentrating on civic body polls in Delhi.”
Civic body polls in Delhi
Congress has already intensified its campaign in the national capital. Public awareness is being raised on issues, such as corruption in the power, health, and education sectors.
“The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) with its fake promises has taken the vote share of Congress. Our traditional voters (have been) influenced by fake promises. We are telling them about the massive corruption in Kejriwal’s electricity model,” said Maken.
He alleged that ever since AAP came to power in Delhi, 37 percent of industries totaling 2,638 units have shut down, causing unemployment to 1.38 lakh workers.
Asked whether the central leadership will devote time to Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) polls, he said, “These elections are fought on local issues. Even in previous elections, we didn’t invite the central leadership for campaigning. BJP is doing it because they are aware of their poor record. Our local leaders will continue their fight against BJP’s rule in the MCD.”
The senior Congress leader is planning to visit the state as well for campaigning in the coming days, where polling is scheduled for December 1 and 5. He said that Congress will also distribute booklets highlighting the rampant corruption in Delhi’s power sector.
“Arvind Kejriwal is making the same promises in Gujarat, that he made in Delhi. We will focus on highlighting his failure in Delhi so that they don’t waste their votes for him. AAP’s model is Bijli, Berozgar and Brashtachar,” added Maken.
Rahul Gandhi missing from campaigning
Rahul Gandhi is taking out the yatra for a purpose. There will always be elections in one or the other state. If he focuses on the campaigning, the yatra will get affected, said Maken.