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Police file 2 FIRs, Haryana police stop Raj cops from entering Gurugram hotel

Jaipur/ Chandigarh: A Rajasthan police team was on Friday evening stopped for some time by the Haryana police from entering a hotel in Gurugram where some dissident Congress MLAs are said to be holed up. A Special Operations Group (SOG) team went to Manesar in Gurugram to question MLA Bhanwarlal Sharma, as part of its investigation into two audio clips which allegedly indicate a plot to bring down the Congress government in Rajasthan.

Television channels showed a Rajasthan police vehicle being stopped outside the Manesar hotel for nearly an hour by policemen from the BJP-ruled state. The police vehicle was later seen entering the hotel compound and then being driven out after several minutes. Additional Director General (SOG) Ashok Rathore said the team was told at the reception that the MLA was not there.

Rajasthan Police on Friday registered two FIRs on a complaint lodged by the Congress over the alleged conspiracy to topple the Ashok Gehlot government through horse-trading of MLAs.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala demanded the arrest of union minister and BJP leader Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and rebel Congress MLA Bhanwarlal Sharma. He also demanded the arrest of one Sanjay Jain, whom he described as a BJP leader.

Though the Congress leader mentioned Shekhawat during the media briefing, there was no mention of the leader's name in the FIR lodged by party chief whip Mahesh Joshi. The complaint mentions "Gajendra Singh" but does not say if it pertains to the union minister.

Union minister Shekhawat said his voice is not in those recordings and that he was ready to face any probe. Sharma, a Sachin Pilot loyalist, has also denied the allegations. The Congress suspended Sharma and Vishvendra Singh from primary membership of the party and issued them show-cause notices.

Rathore, said that "Two FIRs have been registered under IPC sections 124-A (sedition) and 120-B (Conspiracy) to probe into horse-trading of MLAs and alleged audio recordings that went viral on social media." He said Sanjay Jain was

called for interrogation on Thursday and is being further questioned.

Earlier on Friday, Sachin Pilot and 18 other Congress dissident MLAs got a four-day reprieve from any action by the Assembly Speaker on the disqualification notices served on them, after the Rajasthan High Court extended its hearing on the issue to next week.

The division bench of the court fixed the next hearing for 10 am on Monday. The counsel for the Speaker assured the court that no order shall be passed on the notice till 5.30 pm on Tuesday.

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