The Congress on Tuesday said the dissident MLAs supporting ousted Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot should give up the hospitality of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the security of Haryana Police if they want to have a dialogue, PTI reported.
“The Congress MLAs who are staying at the resort in Manesar should shun the hospitality and police security of the BJP government in Haryana and return to the party, then we can hold talks,” spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala told reporters.
On August 1, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had said if the Congress high command forgave the rebels, including Pilot, then he would also welcome them back in the fold. Gehlot added that he would do whatever the Congress leadership wanted.
The comments came ahead of the crucial Rajasthan Assembly session on August 14, where the chief minister will seek a confidence vote. The MLAs supporting Gehlot were shifted after an 18-day stay in Fairmont Hotel in Jaipur to Jaisalmer last week amid speculations that the votes required by the Congress government to prove the majority on the floor might fall below the crucial 100 number. The Congress has 107 MLAs and the BJP 72 out of 200 members in the House. Pilot has the support of 18 legislators.
Gehlot has repeatedly accused Pilot of colluding with the BJP to topple his government. The Gehlot camp may be compromised by the six former BSP legislators, who defected to the Congress last September, but are now facing a court case filed by an enraged party chief Mayawati, who has also threatened to sack them if they vote for the Congress.