Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched ‘Mai Bhi Chowkidar’ (I am a watchman too) campaign and prefixed ‘Chowkidar’ to his name on Twitter, Patidar agitation leader Hardik Patel has come up with an idea to counter the BJP’s strategy in the election season. Patel, who joined the Congress earlier this month, has prefixed ‘berojgar’ (unemployed) to his name on the social media platform.
In a tweet, Patel said that he will campaign for the Congress candidates across the country and exuded confidence that the BJP will be decimated. He said that the Congress will gain power again at the Centre and party president Rahul Gandhi will become the Prime Minister after Lok Sabha polls results.
“I will campaign in favour of Congress candidates across the country to ensure their victory. The Congress party will form the government and Rahul Gandhi will become the Prime Minister. The BJP is working against the sentiments of people,” he said.
Patel joined the Congress party earlier this month in the presence of Rahul Handhi and Priyanka. He has expressed his desire to contest the Lok Sabha polls from Jamnagar parliamentary seat in Gujarat, but added that the high command would take a final call.
“I would like to contest from Jamnagar… But let the party decide what is to be done. I am ready to accept whatever role the party assigns to me. With maturity and sincerity, I have joined this party. I have recently started my career in politics and I have a long way to go, so let’s just see what happens,” he said.
However, Patel’s political aspirations need to overcome a significant roadblock, that of his conviction in a case of rioting and arosn which bar him from contesting elections. Patel has moved the Gujarat High Court seeking suspension of his conviction by a Mehsana court in the rioting and arson case in Visnagar town at the height of the 2015 agitation for Patidar reservation. The Mehsana court had awarded two-year imprisonment to Patel in the case. The High Court has now sought a reply from the state government on Patel’s plea.
Patel can contest the election only if the High Court orders suspension of his conviction. As the per the Representation of People Act, a convicted person is not qualified to contest the Lok Sabha polls.