As many as 42 Gurajat Congress MLAs, who were camped in a resort on the outskirts of Bengaluru, on Sunday paraded to put up a unite front stating that they were not being held against their wishes. As per a report by Indian Express, the leaders also claimed that they have support of 45 MLAs necessary for electing Ahmed Patel again to the Rajya Sabha poll that is scheduled to take place next week. The MLAs were transferred to a resort after reports of poaching attempts by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the state ahead of the Rajya Sabha polls. Speaking to media at the Magnolia Resort, Shaktisinh Gohil, Congress MLA from Abdasa constituency said revealed that MLAs were not in their constituencies after the floods as they were being lured by the ruling party with allurements such as Rs 15 crore and tickets to contest the forthcoming Assembly polls.
“The BJP is using below-the-belt tactics to lure the MLAs. They are using the threat of IT raids and the CBI to target the MLAs. Until now, this was not being done but with the Rajya Sabha polls around the corner they have started it,” Indian Express quoted Gohil saying. During the interaction, he also dismissed the rumours of Congress MLAs were being not allowed to use their mobile phones and live in semi-captivity in Bengaluru.
“The game of the BJP is to get 22 of the 57 MLAs of the Congress. Six have resigned and seven more have been lured but they have not resigned and they are having some doubts. I would like to appreciate the MLAs here who have not succumbed to the offer of Rs 15 crore or threats,’’ he said added further. As per the Congress leader, the saffron party started luring Congress MLAs soon after it convinced party’s chief and a tribal MLA.
Further launching an attack on the BJP, Gohil said, “The tribal MLA was made to sit in a vehicle by a police officer who was earlier accused of involvement in a fake encounter and was offered Rs 15 crore and the guarantee of a ticket to contest the next polls. After they won the MLA, who is a simple person, they began using him to target other MLAs.”
He also claimed that the BJP in Gujarat was running away from its responsibility towards the flood victims and was rather engaging in efforts to break the Congress. “If it was luxury that these MLAs were after then they could have accepted the Rs 15 crore offers from the BJP and toured the world. They have all gathered here to uphold democracy,” he said.