Gujarat Election 2017: Hardik Patel To Support Congress

A day after issuing an ultimatum to the Congress party to decide its stand on the quota issue, the Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) on Sunday announced that the Congress had accepted its demand for "quota in jobs and education to the Patidar community".

In the first list there are 23 candidates from the Patidar community, including both Congress as well as PAAS nominees. "We have clarified all their queries and the meeting has ended on a positive note".

The PAAS leaders are now feeling the heat, as Congress drags its feet over the clarifications it has provide to the "samiti" over the demands made by Hardik for soliciting the Patidar support. Mr Patel is due to address a rally in CM Vijay Rupani's constituency in Rajkot on Monday.

Ahead of next month's assembly elections in Gujarat, PAAS has given a list of about 30 assembly seats from where it wants to field its candidates, sources told NDTV, adding that the Congress is trying to convince the group to settle for lesser number of seats.

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He added that he also is filing a motion asking that the transcript of the disputed private meeting be unsealed and made public. He criticized Brinkley for extending Mill's initial five-year probation sentence following various violations.

Under fire from within the party cadres, PAAS leader Dinesh Bhambaniya has said that "If Congress does not come to us in 24 hours, then we will not give any support to the party during the elections and will oppose its candidates in Patidar strongholds". The counting of votes will take place on December 18. Polling in Gujarat will be held in two phases. Voting for the first phase will be held on December 9 while the second phase will go to polls on December 14. The party is yet to announce its first list of candidates.

To a question related to tickets, Bamania said that there was discussion on ticket.

While the PAAS, which is driving a hard bargain with the grand old party given its hold on the numerically strong community, has demanded almost 20 seats from the Congress quota, the Other Backward Classes (OBC) group, led by Alpesh Thakor, has demanded 12. They can influence the election outcome in around 60 out of the 182 seats in Gujarat assembly.

  • Sonia Alvarado