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Will The Troubleshooter Hit The Bullseye?


Kamal Nath was in Delhi and met Sachin Pilot, and organisation general secretary and close aide of Rahul Gandhi KC Venugopal. File pic/PTI

Kamal Nath was in Delhi and met Sachin Pilot, and organisation general secretary and close aide of Rahul Gandhi KC Venugopal. File pic/PTI

Kamal Nath belongs to the old school of politicians, believing in nipping a controversy in the bud. But the Congress has had a tradition of dragging its feet over decisions

Kamal Nath is back. This time as a troubleshooter. The last time the veteran Congress leader who has weathered many storms was dispatched to settle things was when Captain Amarinder Singh was facing a bitter battle with the party in Punjab. Things didn’t work out the way Kamal Nath may have wanted, but it shows that in troubled times, the Gandhis still fall back on him. According to sources, it was Priyanka Gandhi Vadra who was most keen for the former union minister and Madhya Pradesh chief minister to step in.

Once again, Kamal Nath was in Delhi and met Sachin Pilot, and organisation general secretary and close aide of Rahul Gandhi KC Venugopal. Sources say that at the meeting, Kamal Nath made it clear that, one, it was wrong to label Sachin Pilot’s stir “anti-party activity”. Second, if a show-cause notice is served to him, it would boomerang at a time when the Congress is losing members. Also, it could dilute Rahul Gandhi’s stand on corruption vis-à-vis the Adanis. So, despite party Rajasthan incharge Sukhjinder Randhawa announcing that action will be taken against Sachin Pilot, the Congress for now is taking things slow.

In fact, the desert crisis still shows no sign of abating. A failed Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting in September last year has been followed by little headway and the dilemma before the top leadership is how to placate both Gehlot and Pilot. This dilemma saw the exit of Ajay Maken as state incharge as he was disappointed with no change of guard or at least a decision on it. Former Punjab incharge Randhawa was appointed In his place but he has had little impact.

There will be another round of meetings as the first one ended inconclusively. Sachin Pilot’s camp sees little point in him being made chief minister with just a few months to go for the state polls. Sources say his supporters see a more meaningful role for him.

According to them, Pilot was also asked to ensure no comments are made against Gehlot and his camp. Kamal Nath belongs to the old school of politicians, believing in nipping a controversy in the bud. But the Congress has had a tradition of dragging its feet over decisions. In Rajasthan, the storm has lingered a little bit too long.

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