Gujarat government opposes Hardik's bail plea, says behaviour seditious

| Thursday, May 5, 2016 - 20:29
First Published |
Hardik Patel

Gujarat government on Thursday opposed the bail application of quota agitation leader Hardik Patel

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government on Thursday opposed the bail application of quota agitation leader Hardik Patel in the Gujarat High Court, saying his "conduct and behaviour" were seditious.
Opposing the bail plea of the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) leader, public prosecutor Mitesh Amin told the court of Justice A.J. Desai that he could not finish his arguments in a day.
The court said it will again hear the matter after its summer vacation ends on June 9, but did not give the exact date.
The public prosecutor said Hardik Patel's "conduct and behaviour" since the beginning of the pro-reservation agitation was against the government and was seditious in nature.
Speculation was rife that since the state government had announced 10 percent reservation for economically weaker sections among upper castes in the wake of the Patel agitation, it would go soft on Hardik Patel and no longer oppose his bail application after he spent nearly 10 months in jail.
Meanwhile, police also arrested Lalji Patel, another senior Patidar leader and convenor of the Sardar Patel Group, which has been together with Hardik Patel's PAAS in the pre-quota stir.
He was picked up from a hospital where he was undergoing treatment for injuries sustained during the April 17 clashes between police and Patel agitators in Mehsana town of north Gujarat.
Questioning the undertaking given before the court by Hardik Patel's advocate on Tuesday that if given bail, he would continue the agitation in a peaceful manner, the public prosecutor said this was not acceptable given the history of the agitation, and it was not likely to remain peaceful.
Public prosecutor Amin said Hardik Patel was "stubborn" and that the 23-year-old leader had once insisted that Chief Minister Anandiben Patel herself receive their memorandum at the ground where a huge rally turned violent on August 25 last year.
Hardik Patel's insistence led to his detention, the public prosecutor told the court.
The violence that broke out following his detention could have incurred losses to the tune of around Rs.100 crore, Amin told the court.
He also said Hardik Patel made several statements to incite the public during the India-South Africa cricket match in Rajkot on October 18, 2015.

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