A day after Patidar youths owing allegiance to Hardik Patel’s Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) were held for disrupting a Surat function where BJP leaders from the community and party president Amit Shah were being felicitated, the state government ordered the release of all 136 youths from police detention without pressing charges.
Diamond businessman and Patidar Abhivadan Samiti (PAS) leader Mahesh Savani, who hosted the event at a school in the Patidar-dominated Mota Varachha area, wrote to Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, requesting him not to press charges against those detained.
On Friday, Savani rushed to the Kamrej police station to secure the release of the youths. By afternoon, police set free all 136 from different police stations.
In his letter to Rupani, Savani thanked the CM and other leaders for attending the felicitation event. Stating that “some notorious elements and political leaders had created disturbances”, he said: “Police department had picked up and detained some of Patidar youths from the venue, so I request you to instruct the department in Surat not to take any legal action and release them as they are all from our community.”
Reached for comment, Savani said: “After sending the letter, I received a call from the Chief Minister and he assured me that no legal action will be taken against the detained Patidars. And now they all are out. There might have been some innocent and some notorious elements detained by police from the venue, but first of all, they are all from our community and it is better to forgive them.”
Surat SP Mayur Chavda said: “From the spot, we detained 136 people involved in disturbances. We have now released them. No legal action has been taken.”
Congress: Ruckus shows resentment among farmers
The Congress Friday said the ruckus at BJP president Amit Shah’s function in Surat was a “manifestation of resentment” among farmers over the Gujarat model of governance of Narendra Modi, and that the “deep-seated anger” was “fully legitimate and justified”.
“In the home state of the PM, the BJP president and CM were not allowed to speak for even a few minutes. The slogans compared them to General Dyer and asked them to go back. The key slogan was that the lotus should not bloom anywhere, especially in 2017,” spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said.