The venue for BJP’s north Gujarat zone page pramukh convention, to be held on July 11, has reportedly been shifted from Mehsana — one the hotbed of Patidar quota stir — to Gandhinagar, even as the party has officially refused to acknowledge the change.
BJP sources said that the party was likely to hold the north zone convention in Mehsana, which was also in news earlier this month following death of Ketan Patel who was in judicial custody.
There were talks of holding the convention in Mehsana, but I don’t know why it was shifted to Gandhinagar,” said a senior party worker from Mehsana.
One thing is sure that already there is a lot of discontent among Patidars in Mehsana and it worsened after the custodial death of Ketan. The discontent is so strong that even three elected representatives of BJP ? Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel, MP Jayashree Patel and MLA Rajnikant Patel? did not visit Ketan’s family. In addition, protest against Amitbhai (Shah), BJP national president, by Patidar quota agitators is known. So, one can assume why finally Mehsana was not chosen to hold the convention,” another party worker said requesting anonymity.
National president Shah has been addressing these conventions to instill enthusiasm among party workers in the run up to the Assembly elections due later this year. However, Gujarat BJP spokesperson Bharat Pandya said that there was no announcement of holding the convention in Mehsana. gThere was no such talk. It has been decided to hold the convention in Gandhinagar since it is more suitable from the perspective of connectivity. There is no question of changing the preference due to Patidar protests,” Pandya said.
The party has already held its Page Pramukh Sammelan of Saurashtra and central zone in Junagadh and Nadiad respectively. The south zone edition has been planned in Navsari district on July 7.
Workers of Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) are most active in Surat and Mehsana, which witnessed maximum violence during the quota stir. In Mehsana, police had slapped criminal cases even against Patidar women while imposing serious charges like dacoity on them. In September 2016, PAAS workers had embarrassed the party and Gujarat government by disrupting a function, which was attended by Amit Shah, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, former chief minister Anandiben Patel and all other BJP Patidar MLAs in Surat. Pandya said the Surat event was not a BJP party function. “It was a function of Patidar community. Nobody can dare disrupt our party function.”
Clean drive by BJP youth wing makes world record
A daylong Swachhata Maha Abhiyan (mega cleanliness campaign) undertaken by BJP youth wing Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) in cooperation with the nagarpalika on Wednesday — during which 8,000 people collected 12 tonnes of garbage — won a certificate by World Records India, state spokesman Bharat Pandya said.
The certificate, given to state president Jitu Vaghani at BJP office, read, it is given for “most people participating in clean city campaign (multiple locations) to support Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream project Swachh Bharat Mission”.
State Assembly Speaker Ramanlal Vora, Sabarkantha district BJP in-charge Vallabh Kakdia, district president J D Patel, Himmatnagar Nagarplika president Nilaben Patel, BJYM Gujarat president Rutvij Patel and others were present on the occasion.
Pandya said the campaign was part of a series of events being held ahead of Prime Minister Modi’s visit to Modasa in Aravalli district on June 30.