Rahul Gandhi in Gujarat for rally, Alpesh Thakore to join Congress
Gandhinagar: Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi arrived here on Monday to take part in a rally organised by young Gujarat OBC leader Alpesh Thakore, who is joining the party in his presence.
Thakore had on Saturday night announced he was joining the Congress, hours after Congress leader Bharatsinh Solanki urged firebrand Patidar spearhead Hardik Patel and Dalit leader Jignesh Mewani to also join the party.
Hardik Patel has clarified he was neither meeting Gandhi nor joining the Congress. He said: "I am committed to the cause of the Patidars and will aggressively work against the BJP, who have treated the Patidars as sheer vote bank for ages.
"There is no need for me to join the Congress while the party has my moral support," Hardik Patel told IANS.
Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani has maintained a similar stance while saying: "I am determined to defeat the BJP not only in Gujarat but also in the country in 2019."
Congress General Secretary Ashok Gehlot said: "Thakore is joining the Congress. We appreciate Hardik Patel's decision not to meet us but it is significant that the party has his moral support. The bottomline is that all these three young leaders want to see the BJP out."