‘Our doors open for Hardik Patel’: AAP Gujarat chief

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Italia, who is also a Patidar and was formerly associated with the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) founded by Hardik to spearhead the quota agitation, said Thursday, β€œOur doors are open for Hardik Patel, and we will definitely welcome such a revolutionary youth leader of Gujarat. We have seen his acceptability and liking among the Patidar community people. “

On Wednesday, Hardik had told The Indian Express that his position in the party was “like a newly wedded groom, who has been made to undergo a vasectomy.” He had said that his views were not taken in appointments and important decisions taken by the party state leaders in Gujarat.

Talking to The Indian Express, Italia said, β€œWe have come to know that Hardik Patel is unhappy in the Congress party. We wish that, he should leave Congress and join AAP, as a better alternative in the political arena in Gujarat. We will extend an invitation to him and if he agrees and accepts, we will definitely welcome him in the AAP party. We have already extended an invitation to Naresh Patel of Khodaldham trust. We have kept our doors open to all who want to work for the public and are fed up with both BJP and Congress parties. “

About Hardik, Italia further added, β€œThe working style and ideology of Hardik Patel is similar to the working style of AAP party. He has a mass appeal among the Patidar community youths in the state. We have seen Hardik Patel as a young Patidar leader in the Patidar reservation movement in Gujarat which started in 2015. Naresh Patel is a self-made man who has respect among the Patidar community people for his community service work. ”


Before joining AAP, Italia was actively associated with PAAS movement in Gujarat. Surat PAAS convenor Dharmik Malaviya said, “Gopalbhai earlier supported the PAAS movement in Gujarat and even attended different programs in Ahmedabad and Saurashtra.”

It is widely believed that the Congress’ performance in the 2015 local body polls and the Assembly elections in 2017, in which it won 77 of the 182 seats, was thanks to the Patidar quota agitation that helped swing the Patidar votes in its favor. Last year, it was again the Patidar votes that led to AAP winning 27 seats in the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) to become the largest and only opposition party.

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