In a dramatic development on Thursday, Sachin Pilot and his team moved the Rajasthan High Court to challenge the Assembly Speaker’s notice for their disqualification for indulging in anti-party activities. However, what has set the internet on fire is Pilot’s choice of lawyers. The rebel Congress leader has hired former Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi and Harish Salve to represent him in the court, while the Congress has fielded senior advocate and Rajya Sabha MP, Abhishek Manu Singhvi against them. The choice of Rohatgi and Salve has prompted Twitterati to conclude that Pilot was all set to join the BJP. Others have referred to Salve and Rohatgi ad the ‘Arnab Goswami and Navika Kumar’ of the Indian judiciary.
Rohatgi was appointed the Attorney General of India by the BJP government after Narendra Modi became India’s Prime Minister in 2014. Salve too has been representing the BJP-led government in various cases. More recently, he had represented another pro-BJP figure, Arnab Goswami of Republic, when the latter faced criminal cases for inciting religious tension through his questionable coverage.
Salve was last seen representing Gujarat BJP leader Bhupendrasinh Chudasama after the Gujarat High Court nullified his election for committing electoral fraud. Salve’s intervention had seen the Supreme Court order a stay on the Gujarat High Court’s order.
Twitter has been reacting to the latest development with many concluding that Pilot was all set to join the BJP.
Does the choice of lawyers indicate whose fingers are behind the curtains? Or do we need a certain Mehta to somehow get involved as well? https://t.co/o4uCxxIiEQ
— Shahnawaz شاہ نواز (@shahnawazk) July 16, 2020
BJP’s lawyers Harish Salve & Mukul Rohatgi are representing Sachin Pilot’s case because Pilot “is not in touch with BJP”. How many more proofs do we need?
— Sanghamitra (@AudaciousQuest) July 16, 2020
Interesting choice of lawyers https://t.co/pNszNwVoYE
— Nidhi Razdan (@Nidhi) July 16, 2020
Read the names: Mukul Rohatgi and Harish Salve. And I am waiting to see how the #LutyensMedia will spin this. Those 2 are the Arnab Goswami and Navika Kumar equivalents in judiciary for Amit Shah! Now #SachinPilot needs to be put in place by #INC ! No more benefit of doubt! https://t.co/AhP7XOljPb
— ST (@obviousunderdog) July 16, 2020
The Congress has sacked Pilot from the posts of Rajasthan’s Deputy Chief Minister and the head of the state unit of the party after he rebelled against his own leadership. According to Bar and Bench, as many as 19 MLAs have approached the Rajasthan High Court against the Speaker’s notice to disqualify them with Pilot being petitioner number 7.
The High Court has posted the matter for Friday after Team Pilot sought time to amend the petition to incorporate a challenge against some provisions of the Representation of Peoples Act.