Even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates on Thursday a host of high-profile events as part of the three-day Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, pictures of Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel went missing from all posters and banners across the state capital Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad.
Posters, publicity material and invites related to the main event Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit, Gujarat Global Trade Show, Ahmedabad Shopping Festival and the modern state-of-the-art Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Hospital, which the Prime Minister is set to inaugurate on Thursday and Friday do not have Nitin Patel’s pictures.
There are pictures of Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Ahmedabad Mayor Bijal Patel, Industries and Energy Minister Saurabh Patel, Revenue Minister Kaushik Patel and Minister of State for Home Pradeepsinh Jadeja. But not of Nitin Patel.
Governor OP Kohli, Rupani and Ahmedabad Mayor Bijal Patel welcomed the Prime Minister at the Ahmedabad airport when he landed on Thursday.
This is besides other ministers and BJP leaders, including state party president Jitubhai Vaghani. Nitin Patel was missing here, too.
It may be recalled that the Deputy Chief Minister, who is learnt to be at loggerheads with Rupani, had kicked up a storm when he was denied the finance ministry in the cabinet reshuffle that took place earlier this year.
It was only on the intervention of Bharatiya Janata Party President Amit Shah that Nitin Patel was given the finance portfolio, which he held earlier, too.
Earlier, Nitin Patel, who is the senior-most minister, was pipped to the post when Rupani was made the Chief Minister after his predecessor Anandiben Patel had stepped down in 2016.
Nitin Patel was not only prepared to be the Chief Minister but had already started giving interviews to TV channels.
However, he was dropped at the 11th hour at the behest of Shah.
The Deputy Chief Minister could not be reached despite attempts.