Former Chief Minister Shankersinh Vaghela on Sunday accused the BJP of appropriating the credit for naming the Ahmedabad International Airport after Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
In a letter, Vaghela has written, “The name Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport was suggested when I was Chief Minister of Gujarat. It was given to honour the great patriot Sardar Saheb and to remember him for his contribution to our nation. Prime Minister H D Devegowda had inaugurated the airport with a new name.”
He said that he had issued a clarification now after so many years of the inauguration of the airport “because some BJP people are now trying to tarnish history for sake of their political benefits saying that Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Airport was given name by Keshubhai Patel when he was Chief Minister in presence of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee”. “This is untrue,” he said.
“They have also provided the wrong information to Rajya Sabha. The “by who and from whom” section of the inaugural momento of the airport is either missing or has been removed. Such cheap politics to impress people for political gains by manipulating history degrade the standard of politics. I condemn such acts,” he said.
“Political parties may come and go. This is a democratic country where such things should not happen. I request the Airport Authority to make a new momento so people can learn the true history,” he said.
Vaghela was with the BJP until 1996 when he formed the Rashtriya Janata Party and served as the Chief Minister of Gujarat from 1996 to 1997.
Later, his party merged with Congress. However, he quit the Congress in 2017 and formed a new outfit, Jan Vikalp Morcha.