A day after Anandiben Patel decided to step down as Chief Minister, Rahul Gandhi today said making her a “scapegoat” would not save the BJP in Gujarat as the 13-year Narendra Modi rule in the state was responsible for its “burning”. “13 years of Modi rule, not 2 years of Anandiben are responsible for Gujarat burning. Sacrificing the scapegoat won’t save the BJP,” Gandhi said on his official Twitter handle. The Gujarat Chief Minister yesterday decided to step down, saying it was time for new the leadership to take over as she is soon going to turn 75. Assembly elections in Gujarat are scheduled by the end of next year and Congress is upbeat as it had put up a good showing in the rural areas in the western state’s panchayat elections. The party has been out of power in the Gujarat for over two decades.
The state has been witnessing an agitation by the Patidar community to fulfil their quota demand while Dalits are up in arms after seven persons from their community were flogged by a group at Una for skinning a dead cow. Terming Patel’s resignation as “overdue”, Congress had yesterday accused the BJP leadership of trying to protect her in spite of “growing unrest” among Dalits and the Patidar community over her handling of issues related to them. All India Congress Committee General Secretary, in-charge of Gujarat, Gurudas Kamat also said if she is made a Governor of any state or accommodated into the Union cabinet, then it will amount to rubbing salt on the wounds of Dalits and the Patidar community.