Hardik starts hunger strik, community youth torched buses


In desperate attempt to attract focus, get sympathy and propel Patidar quota stir again, Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti(PAAS) leader Hardik Patel today started an indefinite fast in the Lajpore central jail of Surat a day after an influential senior community leader made a big headway in resolving the vexed Patidar reservation agitation issue.

Hardik has started fast in the jail saying it would continue till the demand of reservation for his community is fulfilled.

‘The PAAS leader, who is lodged in the jail in connection with a sedition case, had written to the jail authorities some time ago threatening to start indefinite fast from February 20. But he suddenly started it today,’ official of the jail said.

‘Doctors have checked his health which was normal,’ they added.

Jail official further said that fast in jail is crime but whether to take action or not will be decided when senior officer will come.

Influential Patel leader Jairam Patel of Sidsar had met chief minister yesterday along with the family members and letters of the three other jailed agitation leaders Chiarag Patel, Dinesh Patel and Ketan Patel in connection with the resolution of the vexed issue. It was being seen as a major breakthrough in the logjam like situation.

Meanwhile, Lalji Patel, president of another Patidar community outfit, Sardar Patel Group, today said that Hardik should show patience. ‘He should have faith in our vadils (seniors) who were trying to resolve the issue. The fast should not have started now,’ he said.

Taken in custody under sedition charges PAAS leader Hardik Patel have refused to intake food from Thursday, on which Patidar youth in Varachha area had two transport buses on fire on Thursday midnight. Sarthan Police have lodged case against 40 people and have taken statements from lady bus conductor Jyotsna on Surat- Ahmadabad bus.

Sources said, “Jail management have taken back all the special facilities given to him, bed which was given to him was taken back and the food of canteen has also been taken. He is asked to sleep on the stone plank like all other prisoners. His food from outside has been stopped by jail management. However, Hardik have started his fast with the permission of Jail management.  His fast has been under observation of jail management and a doctor has been deployed to keep a check on his medical condition. He was given a TV which has been taken back by Jail administration.

According to Jail norms all the prisoners are supposed to take their meal, but Hardik has been given a his meal in his barrack, jail officer keep a plate of meal in the morning and take it back at Six in the evening of he does not eat it and give him a plat again which is taken back next day.