- "Will we wake up only after the horses have bolted," Kapil Sibal tweeted
- Sources say Sachin Pilot had been in touch with the BJP since March
- Congress holds 107 seats in the 200-strong Rajasthan Assembly
As the Congress government in Rajasthan teeters on the edge three months after the party lost Madhya Pradesh to the BJP, senior party leader Kapil Sibal questioned whether "we will wake up only when the horses have bolted", in a Tweet that may not go down well with the party leadership.
"Worried for our party. Will we wake up only after the horses have bolted from our stables," Kapil Sibal tweeted after news emerged of Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot possibly pulling a Jyotiraditya Scindia-like manoeuvre.
Worried for our party— Kapil Sibal (@KapilSibal) July 12, 2020
Will we wake up only after the horses have bolted from our stables ?
Mr Sibal's tweet, said sources, should be seen a wake-up call to the party leadership to stop taking things for granted. It is also drives home criticism of the manner in which the Gandhis have been handling affairs of the party in recent times.
Sachin Pilot is in Delhi with MLAs loyal to him amid a rift with Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot that escalated after he was asked to appear for questioning in an investigation into alleged BJP attempts to destabilize the Congress government by bribing Congress and independent MLAs.
The Chief Minister and his deputy had been ranged against each other for a while; the truce brokered by Rahul Gandhi when Sachin Pilot settled for deputy chief ministership along with the post of Congress chief in Rajasthan in 2018 was short-lived.
Sources say Sachin Pilot had been in touch with the BJP since March. That was around the time the Congress's 15-month-old government in Madhya Pradesh crashed after Jyotiraditya Scindia quit the party along with 22 MLAs loyal to him.
Mr Scindia joined the BJP, which took power in the state. Before quitting, he accused the Congress leadership of denying him a hearing for nearly a year. In 2018, Mr Scindia had also agreed to withdraw his claim to chief ministership in favour of Kamal Nath, on then party chief Rahul Gandhi's intervention.
Soon after, similar murmurs started in Rajasthan.
The crisis peaked after the state Special Operations Group, which reports to Chief Minister Gehlot, served summons to him and Mr Pilot on Friday in the investigation into alleged poaching of MLAs.
Mr Gehlot on Saturday accused the BJP of trying to topple his government by offering his legislators large sums of money and said his administration was not just stable but would complete its five-year term.