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Not openly extending support to Congress in Gujarat elections: Hardik Patel

Not openly extending support to Congress in Gujarat elections: Hardik Patel”

This would eventually bring Patidar support for the Congress, especially when the party was looking after the community's interest, said the leader of PAAS.

With Hardik extending his support to the Congress, the party has been able to rope in three young caste group leaders in the state whose emergence on Gujarats political firmament had roots in agitations. "When Patidars talk about defeating the BJP, the message is clear that the Congress must be supported", he went on to say on the social networking site. Nitin called Hardik a Congress agent and said the opposition party would use him until the elections and then discard him. "BJP has only lollipop for Patidars", Mr. Patel said.

Under the proposal, the influential Patels, traditional voters of the BJP, would get reservation in government jobs and educational institutions beyond the 49 per cent quotas for the SC, ST and OBCs. "We have never asked for any ticket from Congress, neither have we done any deal with Congress", he said.

Mr. Patel told journalists in Ahmedabad on Wednesday that the "Congress had agreed to give Patidars reservation under Section 31 and provisions of Section 46". On Monday, PAAS supporters ransacked Congress offices in Surat after the party declared its first list of candidates.

He said PAAS members who had already filed nominations ceased to be members of the outfit.

Recently, the Supreme Court rejected the Rajasthan government's plea to provide reservation to Gujjars which would have otherwise raised the reservation ceiling beyond 50%.

The "Vikas gando thayo chhe" campaign became a huge hit on social media and provided potent ammunition for PAAS and Congress to question the BJP's claims on development in Gujarat.

The Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) leader said the Congress will include the extension of reservation benefit to Patidars in its election manifesto. We had just asked them to give tickets to good candidates.

"Therefore, in election only those promises can be made to each other and to public which are capable of implementation".



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