On a day when officials of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) carried out multiple raids on his brother's premises, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot wrote to Prime Minister Modi accusing senior BJP leaders, including Union Minister Gajendra Shekhawat, of trying to topple a legitimately elected government that is busy fighting the Covid-19 crisis.
He said that attempts were being made to replicate, with the help of "highly ambitious" members of his own party, what had been done in Madhya Pradesh and that "history will never forgive" those who are part of this conspiracy.
Written a letter to Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. pic.twitter.com/P2TnSoa0Cu — Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) July 22, 2020
Gehlot recalled the episode that he had earlier narrated in his last interaction with journalists - that similar attempts were made in 1996 from within the BJP government run by the then chief minister Bhairon Singh Shekhawat while he was away in the US for a heart surgery. However, But as the chief of his party's state unit, Gehlot had vehemently opposed this move, he added.
"At the time during which our priority is to fight Covid-19 and save the lives of our people... attempts are being made to topple our government. In this scheme are involved Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and many other BJP leaders and some highly ambitious members of our party... One of them is Bhanwar Lal Sharma who had tried to topple the government of Bhairon Singh Shekhawat," he wrote.
Gehlot added that upon learning about this conspiracy, "as the chief of my party I personally met the governor Baliram Bhagat and Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao to protest this move of unseating a legitimately elected government through horse-trading."
Both the times he stood on the right side of history and on both occasions the conspiracy was affected from within, he suggested through the letter shared on his Twitter handle.
Gehlot said that "similar charges were levelled against your party in Madhya Pradesh after which your party became infamous through the country... I don't know if all this has been brought to your attention or whether you are being misled... History will never forgive those," Gehlot said about those who are involved in the current attempts to topple his government.
A statement issued last week from the Gehlot camp had accused Bhanwar Lal Sharma, who is a member of the Sachin Pilot faction, of being party to attempts of toppling Rajasthan government at least five times.
On Wednesday ED teams raided six places in Rajasthan, four in Gujarat, two in West Bengal and one location in Delhi in connection with a money laundering case linked to a fertiliser camp.
Meanwhile, the Rajasthan assembly speaker CP Joshi filed a Special Leave Petition against Jaipur High Court order prohibiting him from taking any action in the disqualification notices he had issued to the group of 19 lawmakers led by Sachin Pilot.