Patel leaders in Saurashtra to join BJP

Following Narhari Amin’s defection from the Congress to the BJP ahead of the Assembly polls in Gujarat last year, leaders of the Patel community in Saurashtra are queuing up to join the saffron party. For most of them, it was like homecoming.

With a group of renegades led by former chief minister Keshubhai Patel and his aide Goardhan Zadafiya deciding to merge their Gujarat Partivartan Party (GPP) with the BJP next Tuesday, it will give an upper hand to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the ensuing Lok Sabha elections.

Patel’s son has already joined the BJP. Patel had stepped down from his GPP post citing health reasons. “Even if Keshubhai does not return to the BJP, he will not oppose the party,” said a senior leader. Confirming this, Vijay Rupani, senior BJP leader from Saurashtra, said the merger was likely to be announced on Tuesday. Return of the Patel leaders would boost BJP’s chances in Saurashtra.

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