Leaders of Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) Wednesday met jailed quota spearhead Hardik Patel as they threatened to resume agitation if the Gujarat government did not grant reservation to Patel community within 10 days. They also announced that a protest demonstration will be held in New Delhi on March 11. The Sardar Patel Group (SPG), led by Lalji Patel, will hold a mega meet in Surat Sunday.
After the meeting, Surat PAAS co-convenor Dharmik Malaviya said, “Hardik advised us that we should not settle for reservations on the lines of Haryana and Rajasthan governments. The government should include the community in OBC, release all Patidar youths from the jail, and pay Rs 15 lakh compensation to the families of those killed during the quota agitation.” “There is no question of compromise until our demand for reservation is met. We have given 10-day ultimatum to the government. If our demands are not met we will take out a rally from Rajpipla to Karamsad, the birth place of Sardar Patel,” Malaviya said.
Nilesh Asodarya, Surat city convenor of SPG, said, “The mega sammelan will be held at Sardar farm in Puna area. It will be addressed by SPG president Lalji Patel, vice-president Gaurang Patel and other leaders of SPG. We have also invited the Surat PAAS team for this programme.”
He further added, “We have applied for police permission to hold the event. Since this is a non-political programme we have not invited any political leader.” Surat city Congress councillor Nilesh Kumbhani said, “The SPG is using my farm for holding their event and I will not take a single penny from them as the programme is meant for the common cause of the community.”
PAAS Ahmedabad leader Harshal Patel said, “Our Ahmedabad team has organised a one-day protest programme at Jantar Mantar at Delhi, on March 11. About 1,500 Patidars from Saurashtra, Ahmedabad and south Gujarat will leave by bus on March 10 to take part in the Delhi protest.”
The PAAS also demanded that the government appoint some “social leader” and not a politician to discuss a possible compromise formula with the Patidar leaders. Recently, the BJP government appointed the Porbandar MP Vitthal Radadiya as the point-person for talks.