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Gujarat Congress Gets New State Unit Chief, Leader of Opposition Ahead of Assembly Polls

Thakor, currently state Congress vice president, started his political career as a youth leader and rose through the ranks. (Image: PTI)

Thakor, currently state Congress vice president, started his political career as a youth leader and rose through the ranks. (Image: PTI)

Congress president Sonia Gandhi appointed Thakor, a popular OBC leader from north Gujarat, as new state unit chief in place of Amit Chavda.

Ahmedabad: Gujarat Congress on Friday got a new state unit president in Jagdish Thakor, while senior party MLA and tribal leader Sukhram Rathva was elected as the new Leader of Opposition in the Assembly.The new appointments are significant as Thakor and Rathva will be leading Congress in the Assembly elections which are due in December 2022.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi appointed Thakor, a popular OBC leader from north Gujarat, as new state unit chief in place of Amit Chavda. Rathva replaced Paresh Dhanani.As per party sources, Thakor was a consensus candidate as he does not belong to any faction within the state unit.

OBC and tribal communities are among the Congress' traditional voter base in Gujarat. The ruling BJP, in September this year, went in for a complete overhaul of the state cabinet and made Bhupendra Patel chief minister in place of Vijay Rupani.

State Congress chief Amit Chavda and Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani resigned in March 2021 when Congress got a drubbing in local bodies polls, but had been asked to continue till replacements were found.Thakor, currently state Congress vice president, started his political career as a youth leader and rose through the ranks.

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The Kshatriya Thakor community to which he belongs has a large presence in north and central Gujarat. He was also MP from Patan between 2009 and 2014.Earlier, he was elected as MLA from Dehgam in 2002 and 2007.

Rathva, 65, a five-time MLA who currently represents Pavi-Jetpur(ST) seat in Chhotaudepur district, was elected unanimously by Congress MLAs as Leader of Opposition at a meeting held at Gujarat Assembly complex in Gandhinagar on Friday evening, said state Congress Spokesperson, Manish Doshi. Prior to his election to the Assembly in 2017 from Pavi-Jetpur seat, Rathva had represented Chhota Udaipur Assembly seat for four consecutive terms in 1985, 1990, 1995 and 1998.

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first published:December 04, 2021, 00:01 IST