Sardar Patel Group, which is in the forefront of Patel community’s agitation for reservations in OBC category, on Friday announced formation of ‘Samrasata Manch’, a forum of all “general category castes” who want reservations.
SPG chief Lalji Patel said it was an attempt to expand the base of the ongoing agitation in Gujarat. “Till now Patels are spearheading the movement to get themselves included in quota. Under this forum other general category castes such as Brahmins, Rajputs and Jains who too are deprived of this (reservation) benefit have joined hands with us. We all will work together,” he said at a press conference here.
Lalji Patel-led SPG works closely with Hardik Patel’s Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti in the quota agitation. He also appealed these fellow general category castes to vote against BJP in the coming local body polls in Gujarat.
“The way BJP-led government committed atrocities on us, it’s time we sent a strong message to them. I appeal all the communities to join hands with us to uproot BJP. Please vote against BJP candidates in these polls,” said Patel. “We don’t want to limit our agitation to only Patels as there are many castes who are financially weak and need reservations. This forum is an attempt to wake up this government before 2017 (Assembly) polls,” said Patel.
Rajput leader Arjunsinh Gohil, Brahmin leader Varang Thaker and Jain leader Hitesh Shah were also present at the announcement. “Rajputs are now with the Patel community in its fight. Time has come to teach a lesson to BJP and its government as they used excessive force to crush the movement and sent many Patel leaders to jail,” said Gohil.