Other States

Hardik Patel has stolen Modi's thunder, says Sena

With Gujarat and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) reeling under the onslaught of Hardik Patel's rhetoric for Patidar reservation, the Shiv Sena on Friday hailed Mr. Patel as a hero who had supplanted Prime Minister Narendra Modi as a crowd-puller.

With the hitherto unknown Hardik >Patel's rallies setting Gujarat ablaze, the Sena, in a typically florid editorial in the party's mouthpiece  Saamna, lavished praises on the 25-year-old Patel, remarking that his phenomenal mass appeal did not "bode well" for the ruling BJP in the future.

"He [Patel] has stolen the thunder from Prime Minister Modi who until now was thought of as the only crowd-puller. His rallies attract crowds of four-five lakh people...with his super-mammoth rally in Ahmedabad last Tuesday, Hardik Patel has thrown the gauntlet at the state government," said the editorial.

The Gujarat government had majorly blundered in detaining Hardik Patel after Tuesday's rally and it paid for it heavily, the Sena said. Mr. Patel is a self-professed admirer of late Sena supremo and party founder Bal Thackeray.

"Violence erupted all over the state, even ministers were not spared the Patidars' rage," remarked the editorial.

The editorial archly lauded Hardik Patel's actions, remarking that he had single-handed demolished that Gujarat was a peaceful state.

Hardik Patel's rallies have cocked a snook at Gujarat Chief Minister >Anandiben Patel, who had invited  businessmen from Maharashtra to her state, claiming that Gujarat was "peaceful, stable and well-administered," the Sena pointed out, leaving no opportunity to take potshots at its numerically superior coalition ally in Maharashtra.

At the same time, the Sena questioned the legitimacy of the Patidars' demands for their inclusion in the Other Backward Class (OBC) category, stating that the Patels' enjoyed the same socio-political status in Gujarat as the Marathas in Maharashtra.

"Yet, despite their power in the State, the Marathas have never resorted to violence or rioting which cannot be condoned at any cost," said the editorial.

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Printable version | Apr 18, 2021 11:36:20 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/hardik-patel-has-stolen-modis-thunder-says-sena/article7591120.ece

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