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Ajay Maken expresses unwillingness to continue as Congress' Rajasthan in charge

Ajay Maken expresses unwillingness to continue as Congress' Rajasthan in-charge

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By PTI Nov 16, 2022 4:35:30 PM IST (Published)

In a letter to party president Mallikarjun Kharge on November 8, Ajay Maken asked the party chief to appoint someone in place of him, sources said on Wednesday.

Senior Congress leader Ajay Maken has expressed his unwillingness to continue as the in-charge of Rajasthan, where he had failed to convene a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party in September amid a rebellion by MLAs.

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In a letter to party president Mallikarjun Kharge on November 8, Maken cited the developments of September 25 and asked the party chief to appoint someone in place of him, sources said on Wednesday.
The development comes ahead of the Bharat Jodo Yatra led by Rahul Gandhi entering Rajasthan in the first week of December.
Maken and Kharge had gone to Jaipur as central observers for holding a meeting of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) in September amid charges and counter-charges by both factions in favour of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and his former deputy Sachin Pilot.
The CLP meeting could not take place, but some MLAs considered loyal to the chief minister, held a separate meeting at the residence of state minister Shanti Dhariwal, who opposed Pilot as Gehlot's successor in Rajasthan.
At that time, Maken had failed to convene a meeting of MLAs to pass a one-line resolution to authorise the Congress president to appoint a new leader in Rajasthan.
Gehlot had apologised publicly later for failing to get the resolution passed and opted out of the race for the Congress president after meeting then party chief Sonia Gandhi.
The party had issued showcause notices to MLAs Dharmendra Rathore, Shanti Dhariwal and Mahesh Joshi, who is the chief whip of the party in the assembly. The party has not taken any action on the notices though the MLAs have responded to the charges against them.
The three MLAs are considered important for the Bharat Jodo Yatra.
In his letter, Maken said it was "imperative to have a new in-charge as soon as possible" as the Bharat Jodo Yatra is coming to Rajasthan early next month and there is a bypoll on December 4.
"Wedded to the ideology of Congress for the last three generations and being in active Congress politics for over 40 years, I will always remain an ardent follower of Rahul Ji, whom I trust and have faith in beyond words," Maken stated.
According to the sources, Maken stated that he wants to concentrate in Delhi through trade unions and NGOs.
He also intends to raise the issues of air pollution and fight for the rights of street vendors, slum dwellers and residents of unauthorised colonies, for whom he has made specific valuable contributions as a minister earlier, the sources said.
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