Cong appointees under pressure as BJP wants them out

Political appointments made during the previous Congress government in Rajasthan have been a soft target by the present BJP government in the state.

Most of the appointees had tendered immediate resignations with the change of power in the state but those who continued to stay are now troubled.

Many of them are reportedly working under immense pressure to resign from their respective posts with immediate effect.

“Except a few, all the board and commission chairpersons appointed by former chief minister Ashok Gehlot resigned immediately after change of power in Rajasthan. Those who didn’t resign then are now facing accusations of being Congress loyalist in the present BJP government,” said a former board chairman and state Congress office bearer.

Having a majority in state Assembly with 160 legislators and large number of their party workers, BJP wants to reward its loyalists by giving them political appointments for which removing the old appointees is necessary, he added. 

Immediately after coming to power in Rajasthan, Vasundhara Raje-led BJP government had withdrawn all  facilities given to the chairpersons of half  dozen of commissions, including Rajasthan State Women Commission and state minority commission.

The state government had come up with an order withdrawing basic facilities like vehicles, telephone, personal security officer and official stay in circuit houses. All the chairpersons approached Rajasthan High Court, which later stayed the decision of state government.

The institution heads and vice chancellors appointed by previous Congress government are meeting a similar fate. Recently, vice chancellor of University of Rajasthan, Dev Swaroop, resigned from his post and alleged “non-cooperation” from the state government.

He admitted openly that he was constantly pressurised by government representatives and RSS.

Presently, there are six universities in the state where no VC has been appointment so far and working of institutions is being looked after by senior IAS officials of the state.

These universities include Sanskrit University Jaipur, Agriculture University (Udaipur, Bikaner, Kota and Jobner) and University of Rajasthan.

Sources said former Rajasthan Public Service Commision chairperson Habib Khan Gauran was also initially asked to step down.

Later he was booked by state police for his alleged involvement in a paper leak case and then had to resign officially.

Gauran’s is the only case where state government didn’t use much of pressure politics as he was unexpectedly trapped by state police that led to his resignation. 

Making it a political issue, Congress party has been constantly accusing BJP of creating unnecessary hurdles for board and commission chairpersons, and vice chancellors of the universities.

“Since the beginning we have been saying that BJP is playing vindictive politics. Board and commission chairpersons are being troubled and VCs are being pressurised to quit.

VC of Rajasthan University Dev Swaroop is a recent example,” said Archana Sharma, state Congress spokesperson.
DH News Service

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