Congress leader Hardik Patel was slapped while addressing a public rally at Surendranagar in Gujarat on Friday morning. The video footage shows an unidentified man walking up to him and slapping him from the right side.
The man, who looked angry and was seen saying something to Hardik Patel after slapping him, was overpowered by Congress workers, who also beat him up and took him away from the venue.
— ANI (@ANI) April 19, 2019
The Congress Patidar leader Hardik Patel has also filed a complaint with the police. The man was later detained and it was not clear as to why he slapped Patel.
Later in the day, the man, identified as Tarun Gajjar, a resident of Kadi town of Mehsana district, told news agency ANI that he slapped Hardik Patel due to the grave inconvenience caused to him during the Patidar agitation. “My wife was pregnant when Patidar agitation happened, she was undergoing treatment at a hospital, I had faced problems then, I had decided then, I’ll hit this man. I have to teach him a lesson anyhow. Then again during his rally in Ahmedabad when I had gone to get medicine for my child, everything was shut down. He shuts down the roads, he shuts down Gujarat whenever he wants to, What is he? Gujarat’s hitler?” Gajjar was quoted as saying by ANI.
Gajjar also said he is not associated with any political party and slapped the Patidar quota leader due to personal reasons.
The incident comes a day after a shoe was hurled at BJP MP GVL Narasimha Rao during a press conference at the party’s headquarters in New Delhi.
The Mahisagar district collector on Thursday cancelled the permission for landing Congress Patidar leader Hardik Patel’s chopper at a helipad in Anklava village of Lunawada taluka of Mahisagar district. Hardik was scheduled to address a public meeting in Lunawada and campaign for Congress candidate VK Khant on Thursday evening.
(With PTI inputs)