Hardik Patel to join BJP on June 2
Former Congress leader Hardik Patel will join the BJP on June 2 in the presence of Gujarat party president C R Paatil, a state party spokesperson said on Tuesday.
Ahmedabad: Former Congress leader Hardik Patel will join the BJP on June 2 in the presence of Gujarat party president C R Paatil, a state party spokesperson said on Tuesday.
Patel's move comes ahead of the Gujarat Assembly elections due later this year. The BJP has been in power in the state for over two decades.
Patel, 28, had in 2015 led a violent agitation seeking quota for his Patidar community and was a strong critic of the BJP in the past.
The then BJP government in Gujarat had booked the firebrand leader in several cases, including on the charge of sedition.
However, Patel, who had joined the Congress in 2019 and was later made the state unit's working president, quit the party earlier this month. Since then, there were speculations that he may join the ruling BJP.
Of late, he has been praising the BJP's decision-making capacity and style of functioning, while severely criticising the Congress leadership. "It is confirmed that Hardik Patel will join the BJP on June 2 in the presence of state president C R Paatil," BJP's state spokesperson Yagnesh Dave told PTI.
Reacting to the development, Gujarat's former deputy chief minister Nitin Patel said if someone wants to use the BJP to serve the society, he is welcome to the party. "Several people from various walks of life representing different districts have joined the BJP (state unit) under the leadership of C R Paatil," he said.
Hardik Patel's close aide Alpesh Kathiriya said after joining the BJP, the Patidar leader should ensure that the state government withdraw cases registered against several community members, and give jobs to the family members of those who lost their lives during the Patidar quota agitation.