Bhupendra Patel on Monday took oath as the 17th Chief Minister of Gujarat.
Ahamadabad, Gujarat, September 13 : BJP leader Bhupendra Patel on Monday took oath as the 17th Chief Minister of Gujarat today. Governor Acharya Devvrat administered him the office of oath and secrecy. Union Minister Amit Shah, Chief Ministers of BJP ruled states Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Madhya Pradesh), Manohar Lal Khattar (Haryana) and others were present on the occasion.
Patel took oath as the CM of Gujarat two days after Vijay Rupani’s resignation from the top post in the state. The decision came several months before the Assembly elections in the state. The western state will go to polls in December next year.
It is believed that Patel holds a strong influence in the Patidar community in Gujarat which the BJP party has banked upon to win the upcoming elections.
Fondly addressed as ‘Dada’ by his supporters, Bhupendrabhai Rajnikanthbhai Patel is known for his gentle personality and is said to be a protege of former chief minister Anandiben Patel.
The announcement of the 59-year-old BJP leader’s name as the Chief Minister-elect at a legislative party meeting of the BJP on Sunday came as a surprise for many as the low-profile MLA was not seen to be among the top contenders for the post.
However, BJP said the selection of Patel was a unanimous decision by all leaders present in the party’s legislative meeting.
Till early Sunday morning, Patel was just another MLA attending small party events in his constituency, where he was panting saplings and planning next organizational programs.
Born in Ahmedabad, Patel is a first-time MLA from the Ghatlodia seat, a post previously held by Anandiben Patel, who is currently serving as the Governor of Uttar Pradesh with an additional charge of Madhya Pradesh.
He had won his maiden seat by a margin of 117,000 votes in 2017, the largest margin in that poll defeating Congress candidate Shashikant Patel. He grabbed more than 72 per cent of the vote share in the Ghatlodia constituency during the 2017 assembly polls.
Patel is, however, not a new face in politics and has served as the Ahmedabad municipal councillor. Patel, who holds a diploma in civil engineering, also served as the chairman of the Standing Committee of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation and Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA).
With Assembly polls in the state scheduled to be held in 2022, BJP went with Patel, a Patidar face for the Chief Minister. He is also a trustee at Patidar organizations Sardar Dham and Vishwa Umiya Foundation.
The Patidars are a dominant caste in Gujarat with a sizeable control over the electoral votes. The community also dominates the political economy with a stronghold over education, realty and cooperative sectors.
The choice of a Patel name is important for BJP because besides being a Patidar, he is also a Kadva Patel. He will be the first Chief Minister in Gujarat from the Kadva Patel community which forms nearly 12.4 per cent of the state’s population. Till now all the other “Patel” chief ministers of Gujarat were from the Leuva Patel community.
Patel has been invited on Monday by Governor Acharya Devvrat to the oath as the chief minister. BJP has said the decision regarding the new Gujarat cabinet will be taken later.
The party is counting on Patel to navigate the party through tough waters during the upcoming assembly elections in 2022. In the 2017 state election, the BJP won 99 of the state’s 182 Assembly seats, Congress got 77 seats.
PM Modi congratulates Bhupendra Patel on taking oath as new Gujarat CM
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday congratulated Bhupendra Patel on taking oath as the new chief minister of Gujarat while lauding his predecessor Vijay Rupani for his people-friendly measures.
In a tweet, PM Modi said Patel will certainly enrich Gujarat’s growth trajectory. “Congratulations to Bhupendra Bhai on taking oath as CM of Gujarat. I have known him for years and have seen his exemplary work, be it in the BJP Organisation or in civic administration and community service. He will certainly enrich Gujarat’s growth trajectory. @Bhupendrapbjp,” tweeted PM Modi.
Praising the former Chief Minister, PM Modi said he is certain that Rupani will continue to contribute to public service in the times to come.
Rupani resignation comes a year before the Assembly elections in the state. He took charge as the Chief Minister of Gujarat on August 7, 2016. He currently represents Gujarat’s Rajkot West as MLA.
“During his five years as CM, Vijay Rupani Ji has undertaken many people-friendly measures. He worked tirelessly for all sections of society. I am certain he will continue to contribute to public service in the times to come. @vijayrupanibjp,” PM Modi said in a tweet.
Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Ghatlodia MLA Bhupendra Patel took oath as the 17th Chief Minister of Gujarat today.
It is believed that Patel holds a strong influence in the Patidar community in Gujarat, which the BJP has banked upon to win the upcoming elections.
Fondly addressed as ‘Dada’ by his supporters, Bhupendrabhai Rajnikanthbhai Patel is now the 17th Chief Minister of Gujarat.