Ahmedabad: A sessions court in Gujarat on Wednesday issued a non-bailable warrant against Patidar leader Hardik Patel in a case of an alleged attack on a BJP MLA's office, a day after it was reported that the 24-year-old leader had placed a list of demands before the Congress for his support.
The warrant was issued for not attending the last three court proceedings, news agency IANS reported. A case was registered against Hardik Patel, leader of the Patidar quota stir, and 17 others in 2015 for ransacking the office of a BJP Legislator, Rushikesh Patel, during a protest rally.
A similar warrant was issued against another leader Lalji Patel, too. "I have been regularly attending the hearings. It is only today that due to some social commitment I could not attend," Lalji Patel told reporters.
"This could be due to the political situation prevalent today. No one would have heard that one gets an arrest warrant issued for not attending one hearing."
Dinesh Bhambaniya, a close aide of Hardik Patel, asserted that this was a reflection of the ruling BJP's desperation ahead of Assembly elections. "He (Hardik) has not attended only one hearing," Bhambaniya said.
Another Patidar leader, Atul Patel, claimed this would have an adverse impact on the already worsening poll prospects of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
"It has been 27 months and 18 days since we launched the agitation and we will continue to fight against the BJP with more force. As for Hardik, we will consult our lawyers and take the legal process forward," he said.
Hardik Patel, meanwhile, has been on a whirlwind tour for the last four days holding rallies across the Saurashtra region. This will continue till October 31.
(With IANS inputs)