Congress leader Rahul Gandhi reportedly refused to meet former party leader Jyotiraditya Scindia
- Rahul Gandhi takes a swipe at PM Modi over Madhya Pradesh crisis
- Mr Gandhi said "pass on benefit" of low fuel prices
- "…You were busy destabilising elected government": Mr Gandhi said
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi today, accusing him of being too busy "destabilising an elected government" to notice a crash in global oil prices this week. The tweet comes amid chaos in Madhya Pradesh, where the 15-month-old Kamal Nath government teeters on the edge after the resignation of Jyotiraditya Scindia and 21 Congress MLAs.
Should the MLAs' resignation be accepted by Speaker NP Prajapati, Madhya Pradesh will become the second Congress-ruled state to fall to the BJP in less than 12 months, after dramatic events in Karnataka last year led to the toppling of the Congress-JDS coalition.
"Hey @PMOIndia, while you were busy destabilising an elected Congress Govt, you may have missed noticing the 35% crash in global oil prices," Rahul Gandhi tweeted this morning.
"Could you please pass on the benefit to Indians by slashing #petrol prices to under Rs 60 per litre? Will help boost the stalled economy," he added.
Hey @PMOIndia , while you were busy destabilising an elected Congress Govt, you may have missed noticing the 35% crash in global oil prices. Could you please pass on the benefit to Indians by slashing #petrol prices to under 60₹ per litre? Will help boost the stalled economy.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) March 11, 2020
The Congress has been left scrambling to retain power in Madhya Pradesh, a shock event that some within the party said could have been avoided had the Gandhis reacted and reached out to Mr Scindia.
Pradyot Manikya Debbarma, erstwhile Tripura royal and a cousin of Mr Scindia, told NDTV Mr Scindia had repeatedly tried to meet Mr Gandhi but had been rebuffed each time.
Mr Scindia, who was once close to the Gandhis, has reportedly long been unhappy with the party's senior leadership; he was passed over for chief ministership in December 2018 despite having made a sizeable contribution to the party's unexpected Assembly polls win.
However, Kamal Nath was chosen over him, in a move that appears to reflect the frustration of several younger leaders in various state units of the party.
Late reconciliation efforts led by Rajasthan Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, who has also been linked to rumblings, meant a Rajya Sabha post was offered, but to no avail.
Jyotiraditya Scindia is expected to join the BJP today and be rewarded for crossing the aisle with a central cabinet berth in addition to that Rajya Sabha post.
Oil markets crashed by over 30 per cent earlier this week after the disintegration of the OPEC+ alliance triggered an all-out price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia. Global oil benchmark plummeted to as low as $31.02 a barrel.
As a result, petrol and diesel prices were, in fact, revised on Tuesday – a second straight day of steep changes in the rates amid turmoil in global oil markets. However, the prices did not reflect the slump in crude oil prices as oil marketing companies take a 15-day average of international benchmark rates.