Gujarat Assembly Elections 2017: The government led by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has withdrawn a criminal case against Patidar quota agitation leader Lalji Patel and 68 others. The government also announced to drop cases, registered under the provisions of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act and other relevant penal sections, against 22 Sanand farmers. The decision assumes significance as the Assembly elections will be held in the state in December, according to Indian Express report. The Vijay Rupani government has announced four more decisions related to the salaries of government employees, including the Seventh Pay Commission benefits to 15,000 employees of 105 municipalities in the state. Besides, it increased the income cap to get benefits of Mukhyamantri Amrutam Yojana and Mukhyamantri Amrutam Vatsalyam Yojana from Rs 1.50 lakh to Rs 2.50 lakh.
Announcing withdrawal of cases against Sanand farmers, MoS for Home Pradeepsinh Jadeja in a release said despite the fact that many policemen were injured in the violence during the rally on February 14 this year, the government has taken a pro-farmer decision. The farmers’ rally, backed by Aam Aadmi Party, had been taken out to press for supply of Narmada water for irrigation.
On September 26, Patidar leader Hardik Patel had said their protest would continue as there was no discussion on the vexed reservation issue in the meeting with the government. Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel had chaired the meeting with leaders of the Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) and Sardar Patel Group (SPG), two bodies at the forefront of quota agitation, and others. Hardik Patel has termed the meeting as ‘positive”, but said the agitation will continue as the government did not discuss their main demand for reservation for the Patidar (Patel) community in jobs and educational institutions.