Poll | Can Hardik Patel survive in conventional politics?

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Sep 19, 2015 12:39 IST
The convenor of the 'Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti' Hardik Patel, 22, raises his fist near the statue of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel during the Patel Patidar community's Kranti Rally in Ahmedabad. (AFP File Photo)

One man is making headlines in Gujarat nowadays: Hardik Patel. Tens of thousands of people have turned out to listen to him in rallies and meetings he has organised across Gujarat.

Patel, who burst into the limelight in July this year, has been protesting to demand reservation in education and jobs for the Patidars, a largely wealthy business community in the state.

In almost three months, he has become a force to reckon with by galvanising his Patel community in its demand for reservation in government jobs and colleges under the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category.

Apprehending a potential law and order situation, Surat Police detained Patel and 78 of his supporters when they attempted to launch an 'Ekta Rally' on Saturday morning.

"The government and the police of Gujarat just want to create unrest in the state," said Patel after his detention.

Is Hardik Patel a game-changer in Gujarat politics? Can a 22-year-old man challenge established parties in the state?

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