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BJP rebels join Cong to oust Modi
September 14, 2007 23:47 IST
In a show of strength, Bharatiya Janata Party rebels in Gujarat on Friday joined hands with the opposition Congress and mounted a campaign to oust Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the coming assembly elections, terming him as the "Duryodhan" sent by the central leadership of the saffron party.
At a farmers' rally attended by a large number of their supporters, each of the five rebel BJP leaders appealed to the people to vote for Congress in the election to oust Modi.
Modi was also referred to as 'Duryodhan' of the Mahabharata by the speakers.
The five suspended MLAs of BJP, two sitting MPs Vallabh Kathiria and Soma Patel and two sitting MLAs Tapu Limbasiya and Narandrasinh Jadeja attended the meeting.
Though rebel leader Keshubhai Patel, Suresh Mehta or Kashiram Rana were not present in the meeting, the young rebels managed to draw an estimated 2.5 lakh people at the rally.
"Those in Delhi have sent Duryodhana to Gujarat'', Dhiru Gajera, one of the suspended BJP MLAs, told the rally.
The Modi government came in for sharp attack for its "anti-farmers" policies and rising crime graph in the state.
The bonhomie between Congress and rebel BJP leaders was evident at the meeting where they shared the dais for the first time in the oust-Modi campaign launched by the dissidents.
One of the main leaders of the Patel community in Saurashtra and MLA of Dhoraji, Vitthal Radadia of Congress, alleged Modi government has done nothing for farmers who are feeling neglected.
"We have come here to fight against the state government's anti-farmers policy and want the government to assure us that it will take care of farmers interests and protect their rights," Radadia said.
"The criminals are having a field day under the present day regime, which has led to a deterioration in the law and order situation in Gujarat," he alleged and cited the rape and murder case of Koli girls in Junagadh whose accused were still absconding.
Suspended BJP MLA of Rajkot Rural Siddharth Parmar charged Modi has done "injustice" to Keshubhai Patel which the farmers of the region will not tolerate. "We will oust Modi from power for which please give your vote to Congress," he said.
Farmers from all over Saurashtra region had come to participate in the meeting.
A resolution was also passed at the meeting which called for ousting Modi from power to save the farmers.