Rajasthan BJP challenges Congress to prove poaching allegation

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JAIPUR: The BJP in Rajasthan on Thursday challenged the state Congress to prove allegations of poaching after chief minister

Ashok Gehlot

alleged that attempts were being made to poach party legislators ahead of the

Rajya Sabha polls

State BJP president

Satish Poonia

said the Congress was "putting strain on the party to cover up its failure".
"It is surprising that those who played the game of horse trading for 55 years are blaming BJP. They have their internal differences," Poonia said.

Rajasthan BJP

chief said the Congress should prove the allegation that attempts were being made to poach Congress and independent legislators in the state.
The Congress has charged the BJP with attempts to destabilise the Rajasthan government with the chief minister claiming that some of the party MLAs were offered Rs 25 crore each.
Gehlot's statement came hours after the Congress took its MLAs to a Jaipur resort for a meeting ahead of the elections to three seats of the Rajya Sabha in the state on June 19.
Claiming a heavy transfer of cash to Jaipur, Gehlot said there were reports about the BJP's plan similar to that of Madhya Pradesh and some of the party MLAs were offered Rs 25 crore in cash with Rs 10 crore in advance.
But the party MLAs were 'alert and united', he said, adding that the condition of those who left the Congress to join the BJP was not good.
Gehlot also targeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging that the Rajya Sabha elections were postponed under pressure because the BJP could not poach MLAs in Rajasthan and Gujarat.
Government chief whip Mahesh Joshi had moved a written complaint to the Anti-Corruption Bureau, seeking a probe into the "attempt to lure the public representatives in order to destabilise the state government".
The biennial elections for the three Rajya Sabha seats in Rajasthan are scheduled on June 19.
The Congress has nominated Venugopal and Neeraj Dangi for the elections while the BJP fielded Rajendra Gehlot and Onkar Singh Lakhawat.
In the assembly of 200, the Congress has 107 MLAs, including six who defected to the party from the BSP last year. The party enjoys the support of 12 of the 13 Independent MLAs in the state.

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