An unidentified man on Friday slapped Congress leader Hardik Patel when he was addressing a rally in Gujarat’s Surendranagar.
In a video of the incident tweeted by news agency ANI, a bearded man can be seen suddenly emerge on the stage from Patel’s right and slap him before issuing angry remarks. He is also seen pushing Patel to a side before the politician’s supporters jump in to confront the man.
According to reports, Patel accused the BJP of orchestrating the attack on him.
“I can clearly see the BJP’s hand behind the attack. Otherwise, if anyone is dissatisfied with me, they can come to me for a dialogue,” Patel told the media.
“They can show me black flags but instead, a person attacked me and this is BJP’s modus operandi,” he said.
The man who attacked Patel was roughed up by the people present at the venue. Police somehow managed to free the man and take him to a hospital.
Though Patel filed a police complaint, he appealed to his supporters not to harm the man.
“My wife was pregnant when Patidar agitation happened. She was undergoing treatment at a hospital. I had faced problems then. I had decided then that I’ll hit this man (Patel). I have to teach him a lesson anyhow,” the man was quoted as saying by ANI.
“Then again during his rally in Ahmedabad when I had gone to get medicine for my child, everything was shut down. He shuts down the roads, he shuts down Gujarat whenever he wants to, What is he? Gujarat’s Hitler?” the man said.
Patel said that though the BJP is trying to harm him, he won’t keep quiet.
The 25-year-old has emerged as a star campaigner for the Congress in Gujarat. He emerged in 2015 as the leader of the Patidar movement in 2015. But not many are happy with his political innings.
Congress leader Hardik Patel had to cancel his helicopter ride to Lunawada in Mahisagar district of Gujarat Thursday at the last moment after the farmer on whose field the chopper was to land did not give his nod for its use as a helipad, an official said.
On Thursday, he had to travel by road to Lunawada after a farmer refused to let his land be used for his helicopter’s landing ground.
The farmer, Vinay Patel, was upset with Patel and said that he is “playing politics on the bodies of those who died” during the Patidar reservation agitation.
The farmer said that a Congress leader had been given permission to allow the landing of the helicopter on his land without his knowledge.