Ahmedabad: 22-year-old Hardik Patel, face of the massive Patel community agitation for reservation, has eventually become a talk of the town. This young lad has been moving large crowds in Gujarat for the past two months, posing a challenge to state Chief Minister Anandiben Patel's government.
A B Com graduate with less than 50% marks from Ahmedabad's Sahajanand College, Hardik hails from an average middle-class Patidar family from Viramgam. He later joined his father in running a small submersible-pumps business in Ahmedabad. He also grew up as a convenor of Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS).
How he's a challenge for BJP govt
Hardik while addressing a disciplined gathering of an estimated over 1.20 million supporters at the sprawling GMDC Ground, vowed that the demand for reservations was non-negotiable.
“We can also do a `Kejriwal` here... We shall not allow anybody to fire bullets on our chests... If no reservations, then no Lotus (BJP symbol) in 2017," declared the businessman Patel, invoking the name of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel while terming Patidars as his descendents.
Hardik also pointed out that the Patidars had proved what they were capable of doing if denied their rightful due -- clearly hinting at the vote bank power of the estimated six million plus community in the state.
"A Patel student who secures 90 percent, fails to get admission in medical or engineering courses... But a reserved category student with just 45 percent marks walks in... If we are not given our dues, then we shall snatch it.”
(With IANS input)