As violence in Gujarat escalates over quota demand by the Patel community, a state-wide bandh was imposed across the state. A series of protests led by the 23-year-old Hardik Patel singed the state capital Ahmedabad on Tuesday with widespread arson reported from various parts of Gujarat. In a video message, Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed for calm. “Violence will not benefit anyone. The only way forward is to have a peaceful dialogue,” the Prime Minister spoke in a solemn tone. Meanwhile, RAF, BSF and SRP forces were deployed along with the police to check any further instances of violence.
Spearheading the Patel community’s agitation for OBC status, 23-year-old Hardik Patel was arrested by the police on Tuesday evening only to be released a couple of hours later. Patel has rallied the communities message demanding reservation in government jobs and education under the OBC quota.
Here are his top 10 quotes:
1. In 1985, we uprooted the Congress from Gujarat, today there is BJP. 2017 is coming… lotus will not bloom in the mud… if you will not talk about our interest, the lotus will not bloom with brilliance.
2. Some said your agitation is supported by Congress, some said your agitation is inspired by BJP, while some others said it is sponsored by Aam Aadmi Party, but we are apolitical.
3. If you do not give us our right, we will snatch it. Whoever will talk of Patel interests will rule over Patels,” he said, claiming that the Patidar population in the country was 27 crore. “Why have we come to the streets now? It is because our own don’t care for us although they are in power.
4. A person told me that you (Patels) have political clout in Gujarat. I told him…have you just seen Gujarat, don’t you see Bihar…even Nitish Kumar is ours…Don’t you see in Andhra Pradesh… Chandrababu Naidu is ours.
5. In Gujarat, we have six MPs, while in India we have 117 MPs… Nobody is aware of that…our seal will be there on dollars.
6. We are the descendants of Lord Ram… we are the descendants of Sardar Patel.
7. Some parties say you do not know about Supreme Court guidelines (50 per cent cap on reservations), this cannot happen. If Supreme Court can open at 3.30 in the morning for a terrorist, then why not for the youth, the future of this nation?
8. This (getting reservation) is a matter of our right. It does not matter which party (Congress or BJP) is in power. We call CM (Anandiben Patel) our aunt, but our aunt should now understand that her nephews are agitating on roads, so she should give us our right and that is OBC (status).
9. On August 15, 1947 India got freedom similarly we Patels will get freedom on August 25. There will be a revolution. People of our community have become aware of their rights.
10. Whoever talks of interest of Patels will come to power in Gujarat. Patel community has brought people to power and thrown many others out of power. If we fail to get OBC status, we will vote against the incumbent government.