Gehlot accuses predecessor of conspiring to disturb peace

Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot on Thursday charged his BJP predecessor with conspiring to fuel violence here tomorrow by provoking elected members of Panchayat bodies who have been agitating in support of their demand for more powers.

Last Updated: Sep 02, 2010, 23:42 PM IST

Jaipur: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot
on Thursday charged his BJP predecessor with conspiring to fuel
violence here tomorrow by provoking elected members of
Panchayat bodies who have been agitating in support of their
demand for more powers.
Without naming former CM Vasundhara Raje, Gehlot said the
government has information that his predecessor and senior BJP
leaders were planning to create violence tomorrow in the name
of ongoing Sarpanch agitation which, he said, was an issue
highjacked by the BJP for petty political gains.

"Yesterday`s incident was unfortunate but it was all due
to undesirable elements which were brought among them here
by BJP. A delegation of Sarpanches wanted to meet me but these
unwanted elements prevented them from doing so and provoked
the mob which led to the incident," Gehlot said.

"Police had to use force to control the situation and
what happened thereafter was most unfortunate. After the
incident, former chief minister went to the dharna venue two
times and made provocative speeches to create major violence
again," he alleged.
Six policemen were injured yesterday as violence erupted
during a protest march by representatives of Panchayat bodies
near the Rajasthan assembly here.

The protesters, demanding devolution of power, broke
barricades and pelted stones at police who lobbed tear gas
shells and resorted to cane-charge to bring the situation
under control.

"We have information that BJP MLAs have been asked to
mobilize people and bring them here from their respective
constituencies to disturb law and order. Yesterday, there were
lots of such unwanted elements in the crowd of elected public
representatives who disturbed the atmosphere and situation,"
Gehlot said.

But, district administration and police shall not let
anyone disturb peace at any cost, he said.

"It was simply an agitation of Sarpanch with their few
demands. The government was ready to meet them and to consider
their demands but in the meantime, it was highjacked by the
BJP for political mileage, and to disturb the peace of the
state in the name of others," he said.

"I strongly condemn former Chief Minister and her
views. It is shameful that despite being leader of a national
political party, she is now doing politics of the road," he
said.

PTI