Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) leader Hardik Patel was on Sunday arrested by the police in Ahmedabad ahead of the hunger strike called by the Patidar leader. According to the police, Patel was organising the protest and hunger strike without prior permission from the authorities.
A total of 140 people have reportedly been arrested ahead of Hardik Patel’s hunger strike in Ahmedabad. As many as 26 people, who were on their way to Ahmedabad from Rajkot, were also arrested by the Gujarat Police.
Nineteen Patidar convenors were also detained by the police, even as some members of Patidar outfit indulged in clashes with police personnel.
Hardik Patel had announced that he would hold the fast from August 25, and had written to Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, seeking the latter’s intervention for necessary permissions.
Patel has announced that he will launch an indefinite hunger strike at a ground in Nikol area in Ahmedabad to press the demand of reservation for the Patidar (Patel) community from August 25.
Patel had on Saturday declared that he and his supporters would on August 19 observe a fast sitting in their cars in the parking area in Nikol if an alternative place was not made available for his August 25 gathering.
Patel said protesting is citizens' "fundamental right under Constitution" and referred to the fast observed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah and others over the logjam in Parliament on April 12, 2018.
"We have given a guarantee to the administration that the protest will not affect law and order and will be Gandhian in nature," he said. "Not granting permission and a ground for the planned protest indicates government's helplessness," Patel claimed.
(With PTI inputs)