Amid internal rumblings in the Punjab and Chhattisgarh Congress, Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday said his government will complete its full five-year tenure.
Gehlot also exuded confidence that he would again come back to power after the next assembly elections and reflecting his aspiration to become the Rajasthan CM for a fourth term too, he added that he would allocate the urban development and housing department again to Shanti Dhariwal for the fourth time.
Speaking at a programme at his residence here to launch the 'Prashasan – Shaharon Ke Sang' and 'Prashasan – Gaon Ke Sang' campaign, Gehlot said there was speculation doing the rounds about Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh after Punjab.
“The Congress government in Rajasthan will not only complete its five-year tenure but will again come back to power in the next assembly elections in the state,” he said.
He added that he would again allocate the urban development and housing ministry to Shanti Dhariwal for a fourth time as he has worked hard to make the campaign, launched today, successful.
In Rajasthan, former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot and Gehlot have been locked in a leadership tussle.
In Chhattisgarh, after chief minister Bhupesh Baghel completed his two-and-a-half-year tenure in June, the T S Singhdeo camp claimed that the Congress leadership in 2018 had agreed to give the post to him after the government completed half its term.
The Cabinet reshuffle and political appointments are also pending for long in Rajasthan and the Pilot camp MLAs have been demanding from the party high command to fulfil the promises made to him last year.
Pilot and 18 other Congress MLAs had revolted against the leadership of chief minister Gehlot in July last year with the political uncertainties in the state existing for over one month.
During Saturday's programme, Gehlot, who underwent angioplasty in August, also said he is not going anywhere for the next 15-20 years.
He said after the blockage in his heart artery, treatment was done.
“The prayers of the people of the entire state helped me. Nothing is going to happen to me…nothing will happen for 15-20 years, if someone wants to be unhappy, it's their problem,” he said.
The chief minister claimed the ground level feedback reveals that there is no anti-incumbency in Rajasthan.
“This is what people are saying. We have not left any stone unturned in doing the work but (we) don't know what will happen next, but the mood of the public is of making us come back,” said the CM.
In a light vein, he took a jibe at the bureaucracy saying bureaucrats are the first to worry if the government will stay in power or not and the first discussions on the issue start in the secretariat.
He reiterated that the government will not only run for five years but come back to power also after the next elections.
On the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, Gehlot said after 60 years, the BJP adopted Mahatma Gandhi for political interests.
If they adopt Gandhi's ideas as well, many problems will be solved, he added.
“On the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti, I would like to say to (RSS chief) Mohan Bhagwat, (Prime Minister) Narendra Modi and (Union home minister) Amit Shah from the bottom of my heart that if you have adopted Gandhi, the sense of truth, non-violence and secularism too should be there in your hearts,” he said.
Gehlot also accused a section of the media of reporting in a biased manner.
Witing against the Congress and creating stories against its chief ministers are the compulsions of a section of the media, he claimed.
Rajasthan PCC president and Education Minister Govind Singh Dotasra, Urban Development and Housing Minister Shanti Dhariwal, Revenue Minister Harish Choudhary besides several other ministers, MLAs and senior officers too attended the programme.