Will continue as Chhattisgarh CM: Baghel after talks with Rahul Gandhi | India News


NEW DELHI: Emerging from another round of marathon deliberations with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi amid a power tussle with senior colleague T S Singh Deo, Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel said he has invited Rahul to the state to witness the development work done under the Congress government while clarifying that he will continue in the top post.
In a vote of confidence in Baghel, Rahul is likely to undertake a three-day trip to Naxal affected backward Bastar region in the coming days. The region recently witnessed police firing on tribals and deaths recently which resulted in criticism of the Baghel regime. Also, BJP is expected to hold a conclave on religious conversions in Jagdalpur next week.
Baghel was summoned for a meeting with Rahul just a day after he returned to Raipur following another long discussion on Tuesday — which came in the wake of the claim made by state health Minister T S Singh Deo that he be given the CM’s post since the leadership had promised him a split term. Sources said the leadership issue was not “as big a matter”.
On returning to Raipur, Baghel had made some comments suggesting that the debate on rotational leadership was creating instability. His presence in Delhi on Friday will be seen as the leadership having blessed his continuance as a loyal satrap.
The CM landed in the Capital on Friday afternoon and headed straight into talks with Rahul which included AICC state incharge P L Punia and AICC general secretary, organisation, K C Venugopal, besides Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
After around four hours, Baghel addressed the press and brushed aside a query about split term. “This issue has already been clarified by Puniaji two days ago,“ he said, with AICC state incharge by his side. Punia Tuesday told reporters that leadership was not an issue in the meeting.
With an air of confidence, when asked about who would be the CM, Baghel shot back, “I have invited Rahulji in my capacity as chief minister.“
As the CM prepared for what sounded like a deposition before the leadership, around 57 MLAs also rushed to the capital in a show of strength. They also held a meeting with Venugopal.
After the discussions when doubts about his future had been dispelled, Baghel rushed to the AICC and met the MLAs along with Punia, while the legislators celebrated at the party headquarters. “It is all fine, we are going back now,” key Baghel backer Amarjeet Bhagat said.



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