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BJP braces for Patel community resentment in upcoming elections

New Delhi: Elections of the municipal corporation in Gujarat are due on November 22 and given the Patidar communities increasing gap from BJP, Chief Minister Anandi Patel is shifting her focus towards auxiliary OBC’s and minority communities for electoral support.

Six municipal corporations, 253 municipalities, 208 taluka panchayats, 26 district panchayats are due for elections on November 22 and 29. The increasing resentment within the Patidar community that has been the strength of the BJP in Gujarat is now frightening the government by denying its electoral prospect.

The Patidar or Patel community who have been protesting for reservations of Dalits, Adivasis and OBC in educational institutes and government jobs, initiated an agitation recently under the leadership of Hardik Patel for themselves to be counted under socially and economically weaker communities of the State.

The agitation has created strong resentment amongst this community, which used to be one of the richer and financially stronger groups of the state and thus had good connect with political classes. The recent decline of their supremacy compelled them to ask for reservation and also their ulterior motive to have a reservation for the children in educational institutes.

Although, these age-old supporters of BJP are now shifting their allegiances towards Congress and other parties to show their anger.

This resentment has put BJP under austere strain which had become obvious when the state government issued an ordinance to delay the state and municipal elections. They had also mentioned caste-war likely circumstance across the state. The government had also kept NOTA out of the electoral alternative.

The Gujrat High Court bluntly rejected the ordinance and only did they announce the electoral dates to be the same, they also said the voters would get back the NOTA choice.

Yet this has not slowed Bhartiya Janta Parties attempts at luring voters as their new slogan says- Saunu heet, Bhajapa ni Jeet (In everyone’s interest, BJP’s victory).

There is still time for Modi and Amit Shah to step in the electoral campaigning and a probable shift of mode can take place. Although, as for now BJP and Anandi Patel need to devise a new strategy to overcome this loss of supporters to not revisit a Bihar like the electoral failure.

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