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Is Late Night Meet A New Move In Ashok Gehlot vs Sachin Pilot? 10 Facts

There is speculation that the meeting may be related to Gehlott’s running for president of Congress.

Ashok Gehlot, who is on the brink of becoming president of Congress, has convened a late-night meeting of party MLAs at a time when his rival Sachin Pilot is out of town. The Rajasthan Chief Minister is likely to talk about contesting the Congress presidential election.

Here are the top 10 points in this big story:

  1. Congress MLAs have been asked to stay back in Jaipur for a meeting at 10pm tonight, after Mr. Gehlot’s dinner for Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar. Sachin Pilot, who is in Kerala for Rahul Gandhi’s “Bharat Jodo Yatra” will be a prominent absentee from this gathering.

  2. Mr Gehlot, 71, is the Gandhis’ choice to lead the Congress, and has been for a long time, but he is reportedly reluctant to give up his role in Rajasthan. If he does, Sachin Pilot, his bitter rival and former deputy, will most likely step in.

  3. Mr Gehlot disagrees, sources say, and neither do MLAs who support him. Sources say the display of strength is Mr. Gehlot’s way of collecting his MLAs and keeping his flock together at a time when big changes lie ahead.

  4. While Mr Gehlot has agreed to submit his nomination Monday, when Congress opens its election process, he reportedly hopes to convince Rahul Gandhi to return as Congress President.

  5. Sources say Mr Gehlot has told Congressional leadership that he wants to remain Chief Minister for a while, even after becoming president of Congress.

  6. If he has to move into national politics, sources say, he wants a loyalist to rule as his proxy in Rajasthan. If not, he wants to keep both roles by taking over as president of the congress with Sonia Gandhi as full-time chief.

  7. Congress accepts nominations until September 30. The elections for the president of Congress, if necessary (if there is more than one candidate), will be held on October 17. The results will be announced on October 19.

  8. Mr Gehlot has so far guarded his post and weathered crises such as an alleged BJP attempt to overthrow his government and the 2020 Sachin Pilot uprising.

  9. In 2020, Mr Pilot rebelled against Mr Gehlot and moved to Delhi with 18 MLAs. A month-long standoff ended after the Gandhis intervened.

  10. Both Mr Gehlot and Mr Pilot were in an intense race to become Chief Minister after Congress won the 2018 Rajasthan elections. Congress elected Mr Gehlot as Chief Minister for the third time, while Mr Pilot became his deputy, a post he lost after his rebellion.

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