The Congress today said it would parade its all legislators from Gujarat before the media this evening in an effort to put to rest all speculation, including internal bickering in the party, as charged by BJP. The party has sent 44 of its legislators to a resort outside this city. Of the 57 Congress MLAs in Gujarat, six resigned from the party in the last two days. Three of them joined the BJP yesterday. “Democracy is passing through trying times. I would request media owners, channels and newspapers to save democracy. This responsibility lies with them too.
We will bring all the legislators before you (media) and you can ask anything you want,” AICC spokesperson Shaktisinh Gohil told reporters at Eagleton Gold Resort at the city’s outskirts. “I am here since last night with my colleagues. We are living like a family. You (BJP) are talking about internal problem? Just see how we respect each other. There is no internal problem or bickerings between us,” he said.
Gohil was reacting to Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani’s charges of internal problems in Congress triggered by the quitting of its leaders, including Shankarsinh Vaghela and Balwantsinh Rajput. “They have taken their MLAs to Bangaluru as they do not have faith in their MLAs,” Rupani had said.
The Congress had sent the 44 legislators to the resort to fend off “poaching” attempts by BJP ahead of August 8 Rajya Sabha polls in Gujarat. Gohil claimed that Congress has 60 legislators with it and ruled out BJP winning the third Rajya Sabha seat, polls for which are scheduled on August 8 in Gujarat.
“The question is BJP does not have any number. Congress has 57 legislators therefore BJP cannot even dream of winning the third seat. There are three other colleagues also – we are now 60,” he said. Congress has re-nominated Patel, political secretary to party chief Sonia Gandhi, to the Upper House of Parliament from Gujarat.