A resort in Haryana’s Manesar near Delhi is claiming to be a “quarantine centre” for coronavirus after Rajasthan’s rebel Congress leader Sachin Pilot shifted there with MLAs supporting him. Its overnight transformation drew attention as the Congress today challenged Sachin Pilot to “come out of the security cover” of the BJP government in Haryana and return to Jaipur.
Mr Pilot, who set off a huge crisis for the Congress government in Rajasthan with threats of split – has denied any plan to join the BJP.
The status update of the Best Western resort can be seen at its entrance, where the “Quarantine Centre” sign has been put up. No visitors are being allowed inside.
“COVID patients are inside,” the guard stationed at the gate told NDTV. He refused to answer questions on the number of patients and other details about the new quarantine centre.
The hotel staff too refused to divulge information. They did not have any answers on how the resort was functioning as a “quarantine centre” since Monday.
The MLAs supporting Mr Pilot – who came to Delhi over the weekend – were earlier staying at the ITC Grand Bharat hotel in Manesar. Later some of them shifted to the Best Western resort.
The video of the MLAs that was released by Sachin Pilot’s team earlier this week was shot at this hotel. In the video, 16 MLAs were seen seated at the lawn. Mr Pilot could not be seen.
The Congress, which has stripped Mr Pilot of his posts – in the government and the party – today said he should stop being the guest of the Haryana government in Manesar if he is with the Congress.
“We have seen Sachin Pilot’s statement that he won’t join the BJP,” Congress’s Randeep Singh Surjewala said.
“I’d like to tell him that if you don’t want that, then immediately come out of the security cover of BJP’s Haryana government. Stop all conversations with them and come back to your home in Jaipur,” he added.
Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar – whose party distanced itself from the Congress meltdown today – said his government has nothing to do with Mr Pilot’s accommodation.
“Private hotels are open for everyone, anyone can stay there. The Haryana government has no role in it,” Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said.
Mr Pilot’s former boss, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, today made fresh accusations about his involvement in the horsetrading in the state ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections. Police summons to be part of that investigation had pushed Mr Pilot to rebel. The then deputy Chief Minister of Rajasthan had taken it as an affront and humiliation.