Jaipur | Jagran News Desk: A BJP ally from Rajasthan on Thursday alleged that former chief minister Vasundhara Raje has been trying to "save" the Ashok Gehlot government in the state.

"Former CM Vasundhara Raje has been trying her best to save the Ashok Gehlot government, which is in a minority. Many MLAs of the Congress were called up by her in this regard," Hanuman Beniwal, a Lok Sabha MP, claimed in a tweet.

There was no immediate reaction from Raje, a senior BJP leader who has been the state's chief minister for two terms.

Beniwal, a former BJP leader and Raje-baiter for a long time, claimed that there is an "internal understanding" between her and incumbent Chief Minister Gehlot. 

Raje has maintained silence during the unfolding crisis in the state after rebel Congress leader Sachin Pilot revolted against the government. 

Beniwal heads the Rashtriya Loktantrik Party. In Lok Sabha, he has been a vocal supporter of the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre. Beniwal is a known Vasundhara Raje critic and quit the BJP just before the 2018 Rajasthan election, which delivered a Congress victory.

Rajasthan BJP chief Satish Punia said Mr Beniwal had been urged not to make statements like that . "Our leaders spoke to him. Vasundhara Raje is our respected leader," Punia said. 

Meanwhile, Sachin Pilot and 18 other dissident leaders on Thursday moved the high court, challenging the notices from the Rajasthan Speaker over a Congress move to disqualify them from the state assembly.

The Pilot camp was been told to file a fresh petition by Friday with a new bench constituted to hear the matter. 

At about 5 pm, an amended petition was submitted. The court referred it to a two-judge division bench.
Congress chief whip Mahesh Joshi, who had written to the Speaker seeking the MLAs' disqualification, also approached the court, asking to be heard before it passes any order.

The 19 MLAs were sent notices from the Speaker's office on Tuesday and allowed up to Friday to give their replies. The notices said Speaker CP Joshi will take up the matter at 1 pm on Friday.  

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta