Wednesday, September, 22,2021

Night of the long knives! cabinet reshuffle now a reality!

  • Moment of Truth: Midnight ‘parlays’ to sort out Gehlot-Pilot issue
  • Gehlot to visit Sonia to discuss the matter
  • A new PCC Chief likely in coming days and 3 working presidents to be appointed under One man, One post formula 
  • 10 ministers to be dropped, 4-5 cabinet berths to Pilot camp


Jaipur: Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot’s cabinet, it is said, may likely undergo a Cabinet expansion and while political appointments might also be made next week, highly placed  sources in Congress have regaled.

And to ensure that the final assent of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot is taken on the matter, AICC general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal and AICC general secretary in charge for Rajasthan Ajay Maken arrived in Jaipur late on Friday night to hold a discussion with Gehlot over Cabinet reshuffle, appointment of district heads of the party organisation and other political appointments.


In fact, right after their arrival to Jaipur, the leaders headed straight to CMR where the three senior Congress leaders, two of which have been carrying ‘message’ from high command, will discuss the matter over dinner. 

There was a huge grapevine in New Delhi Congress circles that prior to leaving for Jaipur, KC and Maken met Rahul, but party insiders denied any development.

However, sources reveal that they are also coming to settle the Rajasthan conundrum because sources reveal that Sonia Gandhi might go out of country around August 10.

Interestingly, there appears to be some sort of an emergency from high command, but party leaders and political observers are still sceptical on the date of cabinet expansion being July 27 or 28 since there is no concrete information on the matter coming out.

However, highly placed sources associated with the high command have revealed that everthing related to cabinet expansion has been finalised.

“The names of Pilot camp leaders to be inducted in cabinet have been finalised and so are the names of leaders that will be dropped and new ministers also, but the date of the oath taking ceremony has not been finalised,” they say.


Also termed as Venugopal-Maken formula, according to it, there will be a monumental change in organization and government with Pilot camp receiving 4-5 ministers out of which 2 will be cabinet ministers

. Furthermore, Pilot camp can be given appropriate representation in political appointments while the BSP turncoats will also be given a fair place along with renowned independent MLAs. It is said that around 10 ministers are likely to be dropped.


Additionally, if Dotasra remains a minister, then a new PCC Chief will be appointed (based on one post, one person formula) with three working presidents hailing from Brahmin, Muslim and Dalit communities.

After listening to formula, word is, CM Gehlot may travel to Delhi to meet Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka. 

Notably, the conciliation committee, featuring KC Venugopal and Ajay Maken, has submitted its report which has been approved by party matriarch Sonia Gandhi.

A source associated with 10 Janpath reveals that although everything has been finalised, but the final discussion on this matter with CM Gehlot has not has not been conducted and without knowing Gehlot’s mood and direction, the oath can not be administered.

“And it is a major challenge to ascertain Gehlot’s mood and everyone from the high command is trying to steer away from this ‘unpleasant exercise’. E

arlier there was a word floating in party that Gehlot would meet Sonia in Delhi but that did not happen as Gehlot cited health reasons for not travelling.  

The high command was left with two option i.e. either Sonia would have phoned Gehlot or some senior leader from Delhi would travel and spoken to the Chief Minister and that is why Venugopal and Maken have reached Jaipur,” sources reveal.


Therefore, only after the discussion between Gehlot-KC and Maken, will the picture become clear. Meanwhile, Gehlot camp sources claim that the chief minister will do his plain talk or ‘mann ki baat’ today morning. As such how can he allow rebels to be inducted in cabinet when 102 loyalists stood and did not let the government fall?

Therefore, the million dollar question is whether Venugopal will be able to draw strength and give, in a straightforward manner, Sonia’s message to Gehlot.

Notably, the high command has also given assurance to Pilot camp of its representation in cabinet, PCC and political appointments. But KC and Maken will have to understand the difference between Captain Amarinder-Gehlot and Sidhu-Pilot and this is why the next 48 hours are extremely crucial for Rajasthan’s politi since these are also ‘testing time’ for Gehlot. And hence there are dark clouds looming on cabinet expansion and oath ceremony, as of now. 


On the other hand, sources from Pilot camp reveal that if Pilot camp is not given fair representation in the power pie, as agreed by Late Ahmed Bhai and Priyanka Gandhi - the ‘conciliation mission’ could go for a ‘toss’ as well. 


In a major development, senior leaders, considered to be Gehlot loyalists along with PCC Chief Govind Singh Dotasra, Chief Whip Mahesh Joshi, Agriculture minister Lal Chand Kataria and others, assembled at Health Minister Dr. Raghu Sharma’s residence to discuss on the prevailing situation.  


Meanwhile, Congress will hold a major rally against Pegasus issue, while following covid guidelines. Sources reveal that CM Gehlot, KC Venugopal, Ajay Maken and Dotasra discussed the matter since Rajasthan is close to Delhi and would have a major role to play in the agitation. It is said that Venugopal will speak to MLAs and PCC office bearers on this issue on Sunday.


Notably, a courtesy meet of PCC position holders has been called  from 10.30 AM on Sunday wherein, the leaders will meet KC Venugopal. Members of Congress’ frontal organizations will also meet KC while Ajay Maken will take feedback from leaders.

  • Also termed as Venugopal-Maken formula
  • according to it
  • there will be a monumental change in organization and government with Pilot camp receiving 4-5 ministers out of which 2 will be cabinet ministers
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