Gujarat OBC leader Alpesh Thakore to join Congress

Gujarat OBC leader Alpesh Thakore to join Congress

In a major boost to Congress ahead of the assembly polls in Gujarat, OBC, SC and ST Ekta Manch (OSS) leader Alpesh Thakor met Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi and announced that Mr Gandhi will attend rally on 23rd during which Mr. Thakor and his supporters will join Congress.

Hardik Patel, the Patidar leader who spearheaded a prolonged agitation for reservation in government jobs and educational institutions for people of his community, was rather tepid in his response to the Congress' invitation.

Meanwhile, BJP also attempted to set its caste equation in order with two Patidar leaders, Varun Patel and Reshma Patel joining the party after meeting party chief Amit Shah.

The BJP is trying to win the elections, but the Congress will stop its victory march, Solanki also said. Just as the Congress seemed to have moved a step closer to establish a mega front against the BJP by securing support of the influential leader of the Patidar commuity Hardik Patel, the saffronites struck back by snatching away Mr Patel's key aides - Varun Patel and Reshma Patel.

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He added, "Me, Hardik Patel and Jignesh are all going to join hands with the Congress party to defeat the BJP". "Whether I will contest the polls for Congress or join the party will be jointly decided by Dalit organisations and leaders in the state". The Congress also invited like-minded parties and leaders including Aam Aadmi Party and Chhotu Vasava, a tribal deader and JD (U) MLA close to Sharad Yadav. I can not contest elections myself because of constitutional provisions, nor do I want.

Earlier Gujarat Congress chief Bharatsinh Solanki said at a presser that he was confident that his party would win at least 125 seats. Technically, Hardik Patel can not contest elections as he is underage. "We do not want to be part of such malicious conspiracy", Reshma Patel said.

For the past couple of years the three leaders from Patidar, OBC and Dalit communities have influenced the state politics, drawing huge crowds.

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