Even as protests from the Patidar community against him are brewing across Gujarat, the newly ordained BJP lad on Monday abruptly retracted his claim of receiving threats and quickly deleted his WhatApp messages about this within minutes of putting them up.
His comrades of the Patidar movement as well as youth especially in north Gujarat, where his agitation for quota for the community took shape in 2015, are enraged over his joining the BJP while several issues of the Patels are still pending with the Gujarat Government.
Sources say the once-firebrand Patidar leader finds himself cornered and feels the threat perception since he is unable to believe and accept that the community for which he fought would turn against him like this.
On Monday, Hardik Patel, the former Gujarat Congress working President, told media persons that he had received threats. He claimed that even after informing the Viramgam Police, they did not provide him with security. But, within a few seconds, Hardik Patel deleted his text messages.
There are two reasons behind citizens’ anger towards Hardik Patel. First, the Patidar community is enraged with Hardik Patel’s settlement with BJP although the State Government has not withdrawn all criminal cases lodged against the Patidars during their quota agitation. And also, family members of 14 youths, who lost their lives during the stir are yet to get government jobs as was promised.
Secondly, Patel called the Patidars involved in the incidents of arson and rioting in 2015 anti-social elements during a press conference though it was he who was leading the agitation.
The day Hardik went to the BJP office to join the party, some Patidars blackened his photos and names on hoardings in North Gujarat. The cops also detained two men about to throw black ink on him.
Patidar youth have also aggressively taken to social media to vent their anger. They are putting up posts and stories criticizing Hardik Patel’s decision.
ND Chauhan, deputy superintendent of police of Viramgam, however, verified that they did not receive any application from his side. He even declined any local intelligence input on dangers to Hardik Patel.
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