Hitting out at the Opposition over its criticism of the recent political developments in Rajasthan, former deputy chief minister Sachin Pilot on Friday described himself as the “strongest warrior” of the Congress and said he would protect his party at all costs.
Pilot, who has returned to the Congress fold after a month-long rebellion against Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, made the remarks during the debate on a motion of confidence moved by the ruling party in the Rajasthan Assembly.
During the debate, Deputy Leader of the Opposition Rajendra Rathore mentioned Pilot’s name in various matters, including the recent political developments in the state and a Special Operations Group (SOG) notice issued to him.
The notice was sent to Sachin Pilot after the Rajasthan Police claimed to have stumbled upon a plot to topple the Congress government.
“They are taking my name repeatedly. Prior to my seat being changed, I was safe and part of the government. Then I thought why our Speaker and chief whip have given me a seat here? I thought for two minutes and then saw that this is a border.
“On one side is the ruling party and on the other is the Opposition. Who is sent to the border? The strongest warrior is sent,” Pilot said, interrupting Rathore.
Sachin Pilot’s seat in the House was changed after he was removed as the deputy chief minister. Earlier, he used to sit next to the chief minister.
“Many things have been said during the discussion on trust vote and many more will be said. Over time, everything will be revealed,” Pilot said.
“But I want to say that whatever I or my companions had to say, we have told the doctor about our complaints… After getting the treatment, all of us today… 125 people are standing in the House,” he said.
From his new seat, he added, he will ensure the safety of his party.
Following the intervention of the party high command, Pilot and 18 rebel MLAs supporting him participated in a Congress Legislature Party meeting held here on Thursday. Earlier, Pilot had also met Gehlot separately.
In a House of 200, the Congress has 107 MLAs and the support of Independents and allies. The BJP has 72 members.
The trust motion in favour of Gehlot governmment was later passed by majority.
Speaking to reporters later outside the House, Pilot said it is not important where one sits but what matters is what people have in their heart and mind about him.
He said the sitting arrangement is decided by the Speaker and the party and he would not like to comment on it.
“Earlier, I was part of the government and now I am not. It is not important where you sit but it matters what people have in heart and mind,” he said.
The former chief deputy chief minister asserted that he is fully committed to the state “till his last breath” no matter what speculations and rumours are spread about him.
The government and the party will reap the benefit from the path chosen by the party high command, he said, adding a roadmap will be revealed soon and concerns will be dealt in a satisfactory manner.