Congress leader Ashok Gehlot speaks to ANI
Congress leader Ashok Gehlot speaks to ANI

Rajasthan polls: Gehlot says party is priority, not CM post

ANI | Updated: Dec 08, 2018 00:46 IST

New Delhi [India], Dec 8 (ANI): Anticipating the victory of Congress in the Rajasthan assembly elections after receiving favourable decisions in the exit polls, senior Congress leader Ashok Gehlot on Friday said that he would love to work at whatever position the "high command" in the party will decide for him, adding that he is not keeping the Chief Minister post as his priority.
Gehlot, who has been the Chief Minister of Rajasthan two times earlier, is reportedly the frontrunner for the Congress party's chief ministerial candidate alongside Sachin Pilot.
Responding to the same, Gehlot told ANI: "My wishes do not make a difference here. In my life, there is no priority with respect to any post now. Now people need Congress. How will we make Congress a strong party? We currently have 21 seats in Rajasthan assembly and 44 seats in Lok Sabha. Our responsibility right now should be that rather than running behind or demanding a particular post, we should work on whatever position the party will decide for us so that the party can gain from it. Given the position at which Congress currently stands, it will be good to see how we can raise the party flag in the country."
"I will continue to serve the people of Rajasthan at any position. There is no weight in BJP's campaigning. They announced the chief ministerial candidates during elections in Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Haryana also. The Chief Minister candidate will be announced by the party high command after looking at what the MLAs and local people want. Since Independence, Congress has never revealed it before elections. BJP is making an issue out of this, but it's not correct," he added.
Besides being confident of Congress' victory in the state, Gehlot stated that he won't be surprised if they win close to 150 seats.
"India can see that the next government in Rajasthan will be of the Congress party. The exit polls tell the same. During his rallies across India, Rahul Gandhi had exposed the BJP and showed how all their promises were false. The people have been betrayed and their (BJP's) graph has also come down. Also, Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje hasn't done any work in the state. Despite winning in the last elections with a big mandate, Raje didn't even go out to meet the public. She didn't attend any public meetings. People were strongly against her," Gehlot said.
"The exit poll results are exactly the same what we had expected that why we agree with them. The results are as per the party assessment. We won't be surprised if we get close to 150 seats and they get restricted to 50 or even below that," he added.
The total voter turnout for the Legislative Assembly polls in Rajasthan was 72.7 per cent. Voting for 199 out of 200 seats in the state began at 8 am and concluded at 5 pm. It was held in 51,687 polling booths out of which 259 were managed exclusively by women officials and security personnel.
Asked about his opinion after the assembly elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram, Telangana and Chhattisgarh, Gehlot said, "The graph of NDA government is coming down. Definitely, the political scenario will change after December 11. Also, a grand alliance will be made."
Results of the Assembly polls will be announced on December 11. (ANI)