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Rajasthan Crisis: Sachin Pilot’s open revolt has pushed the state government to brink. (File)

Jaipur/ New Delhi:
In a crucial day in court for the Rajasthan Congress crisis, the Supreme Court will again take up a petition that raises questions on the Speaker’s constitutional powers to start disqualification proceedings against rebel MLAs for not attending party meetings. Speaker CP Joshi had requested the Supreme Court last week to stop the High Court from deciding on a petition by Sachin Pilot and 18 other Congress rebels challenging disqualification notices. A section of the Congress favours dropping the case and pursuing a political solution, say sources. Even before any court decision on the status of rebels challenging his rule, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has sought an assembly session from July 31 (Friday).

Here are 10 developments on Rajasthan political crisis:

  1. The Chief Minister, who first wrote to Governor Kalraj Mishra requesting an assembly session from today and protested for five hours at his residence, the Raj Nivas, to push for it, submitted a fresh proposal on Sunday and listed coronavirus and economy as the agenda for the special session.

  2. The Governor, while asking for a new, amended proposal after the Chief Minister’s dramatic protest on Friday, had listed six reasons for not accepting the previous one. Among them was the fact that courts are still deciding on the rebels’ petition against disqualification notices.

  3. A section of the Congress believes that the case in the Supreme Court should be withdrawn and the crisis should be handled politically, sources told NDTV. The final decision has been left to the party high command, sources said.

  4. Last Thursday, the Supreme Court refused to stop the High Court from ruling on the rebels’ petition – as requested by the Speaker — saying the “voice of dissent cannot be suppressed in a democracy”. The Speaker had also challenged being told by the High Court to hold off on any action against the rebels.

  5. A day later, the High Court extended that protection to the rebels and deferred its verdict after accepting team Pilot’s eleventh-hour request to add the centre to the case so it can weigh in on whether the anti-defection law applies to them.

  6. Chief Minister Gehlot believes the numbers are on his side and is keen on taking a floor test in the assembly. He also insists that some Congress MLAs supporting him are being held hostage at the two resorts in Haryana’s Gurugram where team Pilot is parked since they launched a revolt two weeks ago.

  7. Mr Gehlot believes that if the rebels are forced to come to Jaipur for the assembly session, his numbers will rise further.

  8. The Chief Minister claims the support of 102 MLAs, just one past the majority mark of 101 in the 200-member Rajasthan assembly. His numbers may dip because of a move by Uttar Pradesh politician Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP). The BSP has issued a whip to its six MLAs to vote against the Congress in a floor test.

  9. The six BSP MLAs had joined the Congress last year. But the BSP yesterday said they had been issued notices that they cannot merge their party with the Congress only in one state, since it has a national presence.

  10. Sachin Pilot broke ranks with the Congress after months of insurmountable differences with his former boss Ashok Gehlot. The last straw for Mr Pilot came in the form of summons to answer questions in an investigation into alleged attempts to bribe Congress MLAs into turning against the government in which he was Deputy Chief Minister. If Team Pilot wins its case, the rebels can vote in the assembly and endanger the Congress government. If they vote against their party, Congress, they can be disqualified but their votes will count.

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