Congress leader Sachin Pilot on Friday quipped about the change in his seating position in the Rajashan assembly and said his party had sent him closer to the opposition benches as it wanted a strong warrior to guard its borders. Pilot used to sit alongside chief minister Ashok Gehlot in the front row when he was his deputy. However, the sacked deputy chief minister was seated closer to the opposition benches when the assembly convened for the session today.
"I was safe on the seat I used to sit on earlier. Then I thought why have I been allotted a different seat. I saw that this is the border - ruling party on one side, opposition on other. Who is sent to border? The strongest warrior," Pilot said in response to relentless BJP digs during the debate ahead of the trust vote.
Pilot also alluded to the Congress leadership's role in brokering a truce between him and Gehlot, saying that he raised his concerns with the "doctor" and has received the "treatment".
"Be it me or any friend of mine, we consulted the 'doctor' and all 125 of us are standing in the House today after treatment...There may be bombardment at this border but we will be the armour and keep it everything safe," he said.
The key session of the Rajasthan assembly in which the Ashok Gehlot-led Congress government will move a vote of confidence began Friday. The session comes after a month-long political crisis in the state which started with the rebellion by Sachin Pilot and 18 other Congress MLAs.
Special seating arrangements were made in the House to maintain social distancing in view of the coronavirus pandemic.
Changes were also made in the seating arrangements of Pilot and Vishvendra Singh, who were sacked from the state cabinet last month.
While Pilot's chair was placed in the second row from the front, Singh was seen sitting on a separate chair in the last row. The chief minister chaired a CLP meeting on Thursday where the decision to move the vote of confidence was taken.
The CLP meeting was also attended by the 18 MLAs who had revolted along with Pilot, a party leader had said.
However, the Opposition BJP said on Thursday that the party will move a motion of no confidence against the government.
With the disgruntled MLAs led by Pilot back in the party-fold following the intervention of the top leadership, the Congress is likely to pass the floor test.
In a House of 200, the party has 107 MLAs and the support of independents and allies. The BJP has 72 members.