Riot convicted Congress leader Hardik Patel has been appointed as the working president of Gujarat Congress. According to a statement issued by the All India Congress Commttee, the controversial politician has been appointed as the Working President of Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee by party president Sonia Gandhi with immediate effect.
Apart from being convicted in a riot case, Patel is also facing several other cases, and is currently on bail in these cases. In July 2018, he was found guilty of causing a riot in 2015 during the Patidar agitations in Gujarat. The Patidar agitation had brought the state to a standstill in 2015 as widespread incidents of violence and clashes had caused intense law and order situations. A total of 9 people had died and the Army had to be deployed to maintain peace.
Hardik Patel and two others were convicted under IPC sections of 147, 148, 149, 427 and 435, and they were sentenced for two-year jail term and also was fined Rs. 50,000 along with the imprisonment.
In January this year he was arrested for failing to appear before a trial court in connection with a sedition case. Hardik Patel was booked by the Crime Branch in 2015 under sedition charges over his provocative remarks where he had allegedly asked his supporters to kill policemen rather than commit suicide for the cause of reservation.
In 2015, Patel had formed Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS), to demand OBC status for the Patiday community. He had supported Congress in the 2017 assembly elections in Gujarat. And in March 2019, he had joined the Congress party.