Hardik Patel's close aides join BJP

Congress invites Hardik Patel Hardik Patel news Gujarat elections politics news latest news India news

Congress invites Hardik Patel Hardik Patel news Gujarat elections politics news latest news India news

The Gujarat Congress reached out on Saturday to Hardik Patel, Alpesh Thakore and Jignesh Mewani, activist leaders who could bring crucial support ahead of the state elections due in a few months.

The Congress got a shot in the arm on Saturday after Gujarat OBC leader and Ekta Manch chief Alpesh Thakor said that he would join the party on October 23 at a rally in Gandhinagar in the presence of Rahul Gandhi. "Unlike the Congress, we have a string of well-entrenched community leaders across Gujarat".

He also said that he has to defeat BJP in Gujarat and will campaign against them. "This is an election of six crore people of Gujarat". Thakore had also met BJP chief Amit Shah some time ago before he made his announcement yesterday after meeting Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi.

BJP spokesperson Harshad Patel announced that along with Reshma and Varun, PAAS leaders Mahesh Patel of Vastral and Ravi Patel of Sabarkantha, had also joined the BJP.

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The last Congress government in Gujarat was led by Chhabildas Mehta from February 17, 1994 to March 13, 1995. "Whether I will contest the polls for Congress or join the party will be jointly decided by Dalit organisations and leaders in the state". "We could not have conceded so much to an outsider as the Congress, which has been out of power for over 22 years and has seen desertion by its top leaders", a BJP leader said, noting that its pre-eminent leader and Prime Minister Narendra Modi also hails from an OBC caste. Congress was "hopeful" that AAP could join hands with them before the polls.

After the recent Rajya Sabha where Congress leader Ahmed Patel barely scraped through, the party had shut its doors on an alliance with the NCP.

"I do not intend to contest elections". I will fight till I have this support.

Replying to the Congress offer, Hardik Patel told India TV that "he is open to the officer but the Congress party should first explain how it will give 20 per cent reservation and fulfil our demands". Speaking for the community, Reshma had claimed in her email to Rahul that without clarity on the OBC quota issue, the community would not support the Congress.

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