Hardik accepts Congress quota ‘formula’, Deputy CM Nitin Patel says ‘fools’

Reacting to the announcement, BJP leader and Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said: “The nexus between Congress and PAAS that was planned two years ago stands exposed."

By: Express News Service | Gandhinagar | Updated: November 23, 2017 7:47 am
Gujarat Assembly Elections 2017, Hardik patel, Congress, Gujarat Deputy CM, Nitin Patel, Patidar quota, indian express Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel

Declaring that Patidars were “not going to openly support the Congress or canvass for them” but underlining that their “fight against BJP” in the Gujarat assembly polls next month would “directly or indirectly” benefit the Congress, Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) leader Hardik Patel Wednesday said they had accepted a Congress “formula” on granting reservation to Patidars and other non-reserved categories “at par with OBC reservation”.

Reacting to the announcement, BJP leader and Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said: “The nexus between Congress and PAAS that was planned two years ago stands exposed. Hardik has been speaking from a script given to him by the Congress… Fools have made a proposal and fools have accepted it.”

Describing the Congress “formula” as the “biggest joke” in the last two years, Nitin Patel said: “The cap of 49 per cent has been placed by a nine-judge bench of the Supreme Court… If the Congress brings a law based on their formula, I am sure it will be struck down by the court since reservation above 50 per cent cannot be given.”

The Deputy Chief Minister had a message for Hardik Patel: “You are a young boy, like a son, of the community and we have tolerated your acts because we were bound by the ‘maryada’ of the chair. You have ransacked our offices, burnt our effigies, but you must stop it now. In my political career, I have seen a number of persons like you who have gone into oblivion. You will not be in a position to show your face to the community, if you do not mend your ways even now.”

Earlier, addressing a press conference, Hardik Patel said: “We accept the formula given by the Congress party on granting reservation to Patidars and other communities without disturbing the quota of ST/SC/OBC communities under the provisions of Articles 46, 31(C), 15(4) and 16(4).” He said he was making the announcement after informing two major Patidar organisations, Khodaldham and Umiyadham of Kagvad in Rajkot and Unjha in Mehsana respectively, about the “formula”.

“Nowhere in the Constitution is it written that reservation above 50 per cent cannot be given. It is only some judgments of the Supreme Court, in the form of suggestions, that reservation should not cross 50 per cent,” he said. According to Hardik Patel, they had held talks on this with the BJP as well but the party lacked “niyat” (intention) to grant reservation to Patidars. “The Congress has heard our plight, our rights and when they have offered a formula which seems plausible, we must listen to it.”

Referring to the ordinance brought by the BJP government in Gujarat to grant 10 per cent reservation to the economically weaker sections, and which was struck down by the High Court in August 2016, the PAAS leader said the High Court had observed that the Gujarat government did not even do a survey of communities to provide them reservation. “The Congress has said it will get the survey done, and it means a lot to us,” he said. “Congressmen are not our cousins, but when they speak of our rights, we must listen to it. We are not going to openly support the Congress or canvass for them… But when we fight against the BJP, it will give support, directly or indirectly, to the Congress,” he said.

On cracks in the PAAS, Hardik Patel said “some so-called members of PAAS” have filed nomination papers as independent candidates. He alleged that the “BJP has kept a budget of Rs 200 crore to field such persons” and “attempts are being made to destroy PAAS”. He appealed to the Patidars “not to waste their votes” by voting for independents or “any other party” since that will “deprive them of their rights”.

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  1. V
    Valentin C
    Nov 23, 2017 at 3:09 pm
    Don't think this proposal of the Congress will pass the courts. Whatever jargons Kapil Sibal may use, he has not spelt out how the Patidar demands will be accommodated. The desperation of Congress is evident in such acts. What if every community started agitating for a quota? Will Kapil Sibal bring out special category reservations for all of them? The only sensible way is to accommodate the Patidars within the existing 27 percent reservation for OBCs. For that, the existing OBCs would have to be pacified so that they don't oppose the move. Given the fractured nature of polity, I doubt if that can happen. Probably, the 10 percent quota for economically backward can be tweaked, which may be the best bet in the circumstances.
    1. V
      Nov 23, 2017 at 2:22 pm
      I Am from Gujarat, and all patel and in my apartments consists of 200 members and we will vote for Mr.modi and not BJP. Make my word and this swing will continue. Hardik made a big mistake to support RG. Due hate towards congress all patidar will vote for Mr.Modi
      1. S
        Nov 23, 2017 at 1:36 pm
        BJP has failed. Paid agents of IT BJP Cell are working to save Modi,. Modi is exposed and lost credibility. BJP is going down.
        1. H
          Nov 23, 2017 at 1:08 pm
          Congress has come up with a new version of the KHAM strategy and it is called HAJAM (Hardik, Alpesh, Jignesh and Muslims). Let's see how many voters are fooled and get their Hajamat done through this crooked strategy 🤓
          1. S
            Nov 23, 2017 at 1:34 pm
            People are angry with BJP and Shah, Modi. People will reject them Modi is fooling people.
          2. V
            Nov 23, 2017 at 11:49 am
            after 50 percent reservations all the rest are at recieving end so balance 50 percent is reserved for unreserved categories. now patidars accordinglyhas right to this unreserved 50 percent.hurray congress has granted us reservation lets party in red chaddi
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