Days after his scathing attack on the state leadership for his neglect in the local body elections, the Gujarat Congress Working President Hardik Patel on Thursday met the Nationalist Congress President Sharad Pawar at the latter’s residence in Mumbai. After the Congress party’s crushing defeat in the local body polls, Patel had slammed the functioning of the state unit claiming that no work was given to him in the polls and his opinion was also not sought for ticket distribution.
Patel, who was the face of the Patidar quota agitation in 2015, met Pawar and discussed various issues, said sources from NCP. His meeting is crucial when the Congress is a divided house not just in Gujarat but at the national level after the G-23 group’s continued attack targeting Congress MP Rahul Gandhi and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
The Assembly polls in Gujarat are due in December next year.
Patel has already dismissed speculation about leaving the Congress in the future and said he would remain in the party and carry out whatever responsibility he is given. He had also raised questions over the understanding of the party's central leadership of Gujarat and said the Congress has failed to struggle as an opposition in the state.
In order to strengthen the party, the high command has to understand Gujarat, he had said.
Patel on the party’s washout in local body polls in Gujarat said, "We have failed to win the public's trust. The struggle which we should have undertaken as an opposition, we have failed in that. The public feels that the Congress did not do its job as opposition and that is why the Aam Aadmi Party got votes in many places."