When former Congress President Rahul Gandhi posed with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and his former deputy Sachin Pilot on November 16 in Jaipur, he gave a clear message that the party was united and will sweep the state Assembly elections. Along with the unity message, it was also evident that the figure of Pilot has also grown with the time. There is no denying that politics is said to be the game of ups and downs, and all the political leaders have seen these phases in their lifetime. Pilot, whose stature has grown in the party, has been in demand in the ongoing five state Assembly polls after party chief Mallikarjun Kharge, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Pilot was made the Rajasthan Congress chief in 2013 and worked tirelessly for the next years and played a crucial role in bringing Congress to power, when the grand old party was losing states after states across the country. However, after the Congress came to power in 2018 in Rajasthan, the party chose Gehlot as the Chief Minister and Pilot as his deputy. However, two years later, Pilot led a rebellion on the charges of being ignored by the party leadership. This led to the fall of Pilot. He was immediately removed as Rajasthan Congress chief and from the post of Deputy Chief Minister. Following the rebellion by Pilot, he was dubbed as “traitor” and “of no use”.
Pilot did not succeed in his rebellion but was able to turn the tide into his favour with the party leadership with his discipline and patience despite remaining only as a party MLA. With his dedication for the party, the party leadership asked Pilot to take a role in the central leadership, to which he refused and stayed in the state. In the meantime, Pilot got himself engaged in the Assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Karnataka, Uttarakhand and Goa. He became the most popular face of the party after the senior leadership, and was in demand from all states to address public meetings.
After the quitting of young Turks like Jyotiraditya Scindia, Jitin Prasada, R P N Singh and Sushmita Dev from the Congress, the party is now banking on Pilot, who is immensely popular among the youth, and to preserve him for big battles as well. That was a big reason why he was given a berth in the Congress Working Committee — the party’s highest decision making body in August this year. Pilot, who has seen many ups and downs in his over two decade political career, has now established himself in the political arena and has proven his mettle that he is not anymore a Gurjar community leader but also accepted by all communities across the country.