Hours before Rajasthan sees a massive cabinet reshuffle, former Deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot on Sunday morning said that he is happy the rejig.
“We have to fight the BJP together to win the 2023 elections. I am glad that the high command took note of various concerns in this cabinet revamp,” MD TV quoted Pilot as saying.
Pilot’s assertion comes a year after his open rebellion against Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had plunged the ruling party into a huge crisis.
“New ministers will be sworn in today. The step – taken by the party and the leadership after discussions – is sending a positive message across the state. We had raised this issue time and again. I’m happy that the party, the high command, and the state government took note of it,” the 44-year-old Congress leader said.
The new state cabinet will have 15 new faces, four of whom will be junior ministers.
On being asked about his five loyalists being accommodated in the new cabinet, Pilot said, “Congress is working under the leadership of Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, and Priyanka Gandhi. This thing that you guys keep talking about – yeh guth, wo guth … koi guth nahi hai (this group, that group… there is no group)… Yahan sirf Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi or Priyanka Gandhi ka guth hai aur hum log members hain. There are no factions in the party. The decisions (of the cabinet reshuffle) have been taken together.”
“Change is constant and more changes are expected in near future. With elections just 22 months away, we have to galvanize people, bring new people on board. The BJP’s policies have been rejected by the people. We have seen the Prime Minister withdrawing the farm laws… this indicates the huge political pressure,” he added.
Four Dalit Ministers have been included in the new cabinet, he said, adding that “for a long time, there was no Dalit representation in our government.”
On Saturday, all ministers in the Ashok Gehlot-led Rajasthan government submitted their resignations, paving the way for a Cabinet rejig in the state.
The Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government will have a total of 30 ministers, including 18 who had resigned earlier.
Three ministers of state, all of whom are from the Scheduled Caste (SC) community, have been elevated to the cabinet rank.
A total of 12 new ministers will be inducted into the Cabinet, five of them from the Sachin Pilot camp.