GEHLOT AS CM: Congress chooses Ashok Gehlot as CM for Rajasthan; Sachin Pilot to be deputy CM


NEW DELHI: The Congress party leadership chose old warhorse Ashok Gehlot for the chief minister post in Rajasthan, where the Congress barely managed to win the assembly polls. Another contender for the post, youthful Sachin Pilot, would be deputy chief minister. The announcement was made here by Congress emissary for Rajasthan, KC Venugopal MP. Gehlot thanked the party chief Rahul Gandhi for selecting him to the top post.

The announcement came after two days of suspense and exertion of pressure on the party’s central leadership by both Gehlot and Pilot. Geholot is a former chief minister who currently held an organisational charge in AICC. Pilot represents the youthful face of the Congress in Rajasthan and was the state PCC chief since 2013. He claims to have rebuilt the party from virtual scratch and oblivious.

Curiously, in both Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, old guard had their way for the top CM job. In Madhya Pradesh, it was around midnight last night that the name of Kamal Nath was announced for the CM post, brushing aside the claim of Jyotiraditya Scindia, who was also a front-runner for the post. Strong pulls and pressures forced party chief Rahul Gandhi to put his weight finally behind the old guard, though his personal choice might have been different. Senior leader Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi’s sister Priyanka were at hand to offer Rahul counsel.
To the relief of the Nehru family, the leadership issue was settled amicably in both the states. It will now be upto the party leadership to zero in on Chhattisgarh, which too it won in the present assembly polls by trouncing the BJP that held power there for the past 15 years at a stretch under outgoing chief minister Raman Singh. 


The 67-year-old Ashok Gehlot is becoming chief minister of Rajasthan for the third time, and enjoys considerable influence in the state and the Congress party. He was currently functioning as a general secretary of the Congress party at the national level in New Delhi, and is in-charge of organisation and training wing of the party.

He held the CM post first from 1998 to 2003; and the next time from 2008 to 2013.

Gehlot belongs to the Mali community, listed in the OBCs, while the deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot is a Gujjar, another BC community. Outgoing chief minister Vasundhara Raje was a Rajput. Mali community is associated with agriculture and flower cultivation and sales. –IHN-NN



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