Patel community demanding OBC status launch mega rally

25 Aug 2015 | Written by Vijaya ; Edited by Achin Garg
Gujarat's Patel Community demands OBC reservation

People from the Patel community, seeking Other Backward Class status have launched a mega rally in Ahmedabad.

Hardik Patel, Convener of Patidar Aarakshan Andolan Samiti said, "If this government does not heed our demands, the lotus will not bloom in 2017."

The Gujarat CM is taking a stock of the situation and has called an emergency meeting of all ministers and officials.

In context: Gujarat's Patel Community demands OBC reservation

Jul 2015What is the Patel OBC reservation issue?

Accounting for 12% of Gujarat's population, the Patels or Patidars are among the economically strong communities of the state.

Their contention is that Patel youth are neither getting admissions in colleges nor jobs in the government and want 27% quota in government jobs and education.

They want themselves to be added as 147th OBC community to the existing list.

23 Jul 2015Rally by Patel community turns violent

A rally by the Patel community demanding reservation turned violent in Gujarat's Visnagar town following which the police used teargas shells to control mob.

At least 25,000 men and women from the community took out the rally, organised under the banner of 'Patidar Anamat Samiti', in Visnagar.

Meanwhile, the community claimed that the violence was caused by people from other groups.

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Gujarat government willing to discuss reservation issue

7 Aug 2015Gujarat government willing to discuss reservation issue

Gujarat Health Minister Nitin Patel said that state government is ready to talk to Patel community.

He said, "Gujarat state has already invited leaders of Patel community to discuss the issue of reservation and is trying to solve the issue."

He also added that Congress was instigating the Patel community to demand reservation and at the same time threatening other communities which have reservation.

Rallies organized between July and August 2015

The demonstrations by Patel community were held in Vijapur on 28 July, in Devbhoomi Dwarka district on 1 August, in Gandhinagar, Himmatnagar on 3 August, in Rajkot on 5 August, in Surat on 17 August, in Bharuch, Vadodara on 21 August etc.

24 Aug 2015CM says Patel community cannot be given reservation

Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel ruled out any reservation to Patel community citing the Constitution and Supreme Court judgements.

She said no changes can be made to the existing structure of reservations for SCs, STs and OBCs and further reservation beyond the overall 50% cannot be given.

The CM also urged the community members to end their ongoing agitation.

Existing structure of reservations

As per the existing structure of reservations, those from the Schedules Tribes have 15% reservation, Scheduled Castes have 7.5% and OBCs have 27%. Further, the overall reservation cannot exceed 50%.
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25 Aug 2015Patel community demanding OBC status launch mega rally

26 Aug 2015Protests in several parts of Gujarat, curfew imposed

Protests began in various part of the rally after Hardik Patel, the leader of the Patel agitation was detained after the rally. He was released soon after.

He appealed for peace after violence hit the state; he also called for a state-wide bandh on Wednesday.

Curfew was imposed in several areas as the agitation increased. Parmilitary forces have been deployed in Gujarat as well.

25 Oct 2015Hardik Patel arrested, booked for sedition

An FIR was filed against Hardik Patel for sedition and waging war against the state.

An Ahmedabad court had remanded him for 7 days in police custody.

On an appeal made to the Gujarat High Court to quash the FIR filed against him, HC had prima-facie found the sedition case against him is not incorrect.

The court said that protest cannot "jeopardise public tranquility".

6 Jan 2016Patel moves to Supreme Court

Hardik Patel appealed against the Gujarat HC's decision in the Apex court to revoke the sedition charges against him.

Sedition charges under Section 124(A) of the Indian Penal Code can attract penalties up to life imprisonment.

The Supreme Court, however, refused to stay HC's verdict paving the way for filing of charge sheet by the police against the PAAS leader.

12 Feb 2016Mobile internet can be blocked under curfew: SC

The Supreme Court has said that a state can block mobile internet access by using its curfew powers.

The court quashed the petition filed by a law student Gaurav Sureshbhai Vyas against the Gujarat High Court's decision which allowed stopping of mobile internet during the Patidar agitation.

SC said that the blocking amounts to "minimal restriction" and does not violate free speech.

Maintaining law and order more important

Chief Justice T.S. Thakur said that public protest can turn violent which may affect public tranquility. Hence, blocking of mobile internet is justified for maintaining law and order.