Rajasthan CM flouts Congress' guidelines by seeking votes for Malkarjun Kharge
Three days ahead of the voting for the election of the Congress President, a major controversy has erupted here after CM Ashok Gehlot sought votes for candidate Malkarjun Kharge flouting guidelines of the party’s Central Election Authority
JAIPUR: Three days ahead of the voting for the election of the Congress President, a major controversy has erupted here after Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot sought votes for candidate Malkarjun Kharge flouting guidelines of the party's Central Election Authority which clearly has said that no leader can campaign for any candidate while being in office.
Gehlot on Thursday shared a video message on social media appealing for Kharge's win. This is being considered open campaigning in favour of Kharge, whereas according to the guidelines of the Congress Election Authority (CEC), no candidate can do this while holding the position of leader of the legislature party.
The CEC Chairman, Madhusudan Mistry, had issued a 7-point guideline on September 30 regarding the election of Congress president. According to this guideline, the general secretary in-charge, secretary in-charge, national office-bearers, leader of the legislature party, spokesperson of the party cannot campaign for any candidate for the post of president. If they want to campaign for a candidate, they have to leave the post first. Despite this guideline, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has openly campaigned for Kharge.
The Rajasthan CM in the video said, "Congress President should be the one who keeps in touch with the organisation, leaders and workers with experience. His position should be such that he can negotiate with all opposition parties. The Speaker should be such a person who has the ability to take everyone along. Seeing his merit, we became his proponent.
"I wish Kharge sahib to be successful with huge votes. Mallikarjun Kharge sahib is rich and experienced personality. He has more than 50 years of experience including being nine times MLA and two times MP. We have become his proponents. Kharge is such a person who has imbibed the policies, ideology and programs of the Congress. Have command in Hindi and English," he added.
These statements of Gehlot had come at a time when another presidential candidate for Congress Shashi Tharoor had alleged that the state presidents and office-bearers of Congress in the states were giving more importance to Kharge. Tharoor had raised questions on not being given a level playing field.
The response of the Central Election Authority in this matter is now awaited. If Shashi Tharoor or any leader complains, then action can be taken for violation of guidelines, said sources from the party. (IANS)