Gujarat government promises to hold talks with agitators seeking quota for Patidars

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat government will hold talks with Patel quota agitators and other community leaders in the coming days to resolve the sensitive issue "at the earliest", deputy chief minister Nitin Patel said on Sunday.

 Gujarat government promises to hold talks with agitators seeking quota for Patidars

Gujarat deputy chief minister Nitin Patel. Image courtesy: @Nitin_patel

He said the key points to be discussed with the agitators as well as community organisations will be providing compensation or jobs to the kin of the Patidar "martyrs" and withdrawal of cases filed against protesters.

Patel claimed people associated with both the bodies (the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti and the Sardar Patel Group) are ready to hold talks with the government to arrive at a "compromise formula". "Recently, various community organisations as well leaders of both the agitating bodies have conveyed to us that they want to hold discussion with us to bring an amicable solution regarding the ongoing quota stir. Just like them, state government is also keen to resolve this issue at the earliest," an official release quoted Patel as saying.

"Key issues to be discussed include providing financial help or jobs to the kin of martyrs and withdrawal of cases against agitators. Since the government is also very keen to solve this matter, we will hold meetings with agitators and community leaders as soon as possible" he said.

The Patidar community has been holding protests, though intermittently, since July 2015 seeking OBC status and reservation in government jobs and educational institutions. The agitation turned violent after the largest demonstration was held in Ahmedabad on 25 August, 2015.

Subsequently, incidents of violence and arson were reported across the state, resulting in a curfew in several cities and towns. Politically, Patidars are believed to be supporters of the BJP, which is trying to win them back ahead of the Assembly polls, due later this year.

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Updated Date: Aug 06, 2017 22:59:02 IST