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23 November 2017, 12:23 | Sherry Padilla
Find out if Hardik Patel's video is genuine Gujarat High Court tells EC
"Congress has agreed to give Patidars reservations under section 31 and provisions of section 46", Hardik said, adding,"We have never appealed to anyone to vote for Congress, but since they are talking about our rights, we leave it on people to decide". The Congress, he said, has offered an acceptable solution for how to include Patels as beneficiaries of affirmative action policies.
The PAAS has been agitating against the government for more than two years over the issue of reservation for the Patidar community and has pledged to oppose the ruling BJP in the coming state assembly elections in December. The deputy CM accused Hardik of speaking "Congress' language" and that the reservation does not have constitutional validity. Though the Dalit leader did not explicitly commit that he would campaign for the Congress, he said he would do everything possible to prevent the BJP from coming to power in Gujarat.
"We are not openly extending support to Congress, but we will fight the BJP". Senior advocate Aman Lekhi said the quota promise was "pure power politics" where the primary aim is to grab power and the social welfare objective behind reservation gets lost. There is no disagreement between the Congress and Patidar leaders.
Reacting to the development, Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the "Congress-Hardik club" is one of mutual deception.
Hardik Patel claimed that reservation above 50 percent can be given in Gujarat since at least 9 states have already given reservation to deserving categories above 50 percent.
"The law of the land is very clear and is laid down by the Supreme Court, and only reaffirmed last week in Rajasthan's case that 50 per cent reservation cap can not be breached. Our target is to win the election and fulfil promises made to the people", Sibal told reporters in New Delhi.
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