Published: Sun, December 31, 2017
Medicine | By Melba Vasquez

Hardik Patel advises 'unhappy' Gujarat Dy CM Nitin Patel to join Congress

Hardik Patel advises 'unhappy' Gujarat Dy CM Nitin Patel to join Congress

Saurabh, the son-of-law of industry doyen Dhirubhai Ambani's elder brother Ramnik Ambani, was dropped by Rupani after he took control of the government replacing the then chief minister, Anandiben Patel. Ministers were allotted their portfolios three days after the oath taking ceremony of the Chief Minister of Gujarat.

After senior BJP leader and deputy chief minister Nitin Patel expressed unhappiness over the changes in his portfolios, Patidar leader Hardik Patel on Saturday asked him to leave the BJP and join forces with him. A meeting was organised at the Vijay Rupani's residence which was to be attended by all the cabinet ministers but ruckus started to arise when they were made to wait for four hours before they could attend the meeting.

However, Patel kept his options open and said, "I am at my home and everyone can come to meet me".

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In the previous government Nitin Patel handled portfolios such as finance and urban development, while in the new government, which was sworn in earlier this week, he was given relatively lightweight departments such as road and building, and health. In fact, the other two important portfolios revenue and finance were also taken away from him.

The Deputy Chief Minister looked glum and lost even during the first joint press conference of the new Cabinet late on Thursday night and maintained an uncanny silence. If the BJP wanted to keep the caste equation in mind Patel was the idle candidate.

Lalji Patel, who is convener of the Sardar Patel Group (SPG) which had launched the Patidar quota agitation along with Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti, today called on the deputy chief minister at his official residence in Gandhinagar with dozens of supporters.

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Meanwhile, the Patidar community has rallied behind Mr. Patel, who has emerged as the main leader of the community after the Assembly polls.

He added, "To ensure good governance in Gujarat, we will talk to the Congress to include Nitinbhai and give him the post he deserves". He is made the deputy chief ministers but denied heavy weight departments such as Mines, Industries, General Administration and Finance.

The absence of Narendra Modi from Gujarat and the declining graph of BJP in the state is becoming a case of worry for the central leadership. Some groups have called for a bandh in Mehsana, which is represented by Nitin Patel, a seven-time MLA.

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The newly crowned Vijay Rupani-led BJP government in Gujarat is off to a turbulent start of the new year 2018.

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