Questioning her ability to govern the state, newly appointed Gujarat Congress President Baratsinh Solanki has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to shift Chief Minister Anandiben Patel to Delhi after accusing her of misgovernance.
Solanki, who was recently appointed as head of State Congress has been entrusted with the herculean task of reviving the party in Gujarat, which is in Opposition for the last 25 years. The party has been battered at the hands of the BJP in every election ranging from village panchyat to Lok Sabha. In 2014, it touched a new low when it scored a zero out of 26 Lok Sabha seats.
Solanki’s first test will be large scale local bodies election coming up in the month of October where battle lines are drawn between the two parties.
Congress has a chance to cash in on the absence of former chief minister Narendra Modi on the election turf, who moved to Delhi after being elected as the PM.
"The state was proud to have a first woman chief minister. But she is making mistake after mistake in governance. I request Prime Minister Narendra Modi to shift her to Delhi and put some competent person in her place as chief minister of Gujarat," Solanki told PTI.
"Under her rule, crime against women has increased. Women have to go long distance to fetch water, tankers have become common as state government cannot provide water through pipelines. The state government has failed on all fronts," Solanki said replying to a question on will the task of Congress be easier in the absence of Modi, when BJP will have to fight local body elections under Anandiben Patel.
As many as six municipal corporations including Ahmedabad, 253 municipalities, 208 taluka panchayat and 26 district panchayat are expected to go to polls, scheduled to be held in October 2015.
Solanki, a former Union Minister of State in UPA 2 government, said they are fully prepared to take on BJP in the local body polls.
"After we lost all 26 seats in 2014 Lok Sabha polls, the morale of party workers was down," Solanki conceded.
"After I took over (as President of Gujarat Congress), we have worked hard to boost the confidence of our party workers and results are showing as the cadres feel that this is the right time to take on BJP as they have ruled the state for almost 25 years here now," he said.