Gopal Italia Arrest: AAP Says Targetting Gujarat’s Patel Community

Aam Aadmi Party termed the arrest of its Gujarat chief, Gopal Italia, as the subjugation of the influential Patidar community of the state by the Bharatiya Janata Party.

NEW DELHI | Updated: 13 October, 2022 10:20 pm IST
AAP's Gujarat chief Gopal Italia was arrested by Delhi Police (Photo By Sumit Kumar)

Seizing the opportunity ahead of the assembly election later this year, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) termed the arrest of its Gujarat chief, Gopal Italia, as the subjugation of the influential Patidar community of the state by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

On Thursday, Delhi Police arrested Italia from the National Commission of Women (NCW) office in New Delhi after a video of him making derogatory comments about Prime minister Narendra Modi became viral.

Lashing out at the BJP for making a malicious attempt to suppress the voice of Patidars and “arresting” Italia, AAP spokesperson and MLA Saurabh Bhardwaj said that the BJP mustn’t forget that not once in history has a Kansa been able to defeat a Gopal.

He stated, “AAP Gujarat President Gopal Italia has been maliciously arrested by Central Government’s Police without any charge.”

“BJP hates Patidars. After gunning them down, BJP is now arresting Sardar Patel’s descendants. The BJP’s hatred for Patidars has been exposed in front of everyone today. The Aam Aadmi Party is terrorising the BJP’s dreams now. Their fear is evident,” Bhardwaj said.

Bhardwaj said, “Italia has been arrested by the Central Government-controlled Delhi Police at the behest of the Bharatiya Janata Party without any charge. It is a known fact that against the BJP in Gujarat, the biggest movement was the rise of the Patels-Patidars and their agitation against the BJP Government.”

He added, “We all know that the Bharatiya Janata Party hates the Patidar community. There is a lot of anger in the Patidar community. The public is extremely anguished at how the BJP is reacting today. BJP has not had any achievement of its own in 27 years, so today it wants to fight elections on false videos and propaganda and by putting AAP leaders in jail to build on its slander campaign.”

The AAP came down heavily on the BJP for the selective targeting and subjugation of the Patidar community in Gujarat. The party launched a no-holds-barred attack on the BJP.

Senior AAP Leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh said, “BJP has a long history of crushing the Patel community’s rise by either gunning down their people or arresting them in frivolous cases.”

“Gopal Italia has made a huge leap in politics despite coming from a humble background; why is the BJP hell-bent on imprisoning him? Harassment and malicious actions against Gopal Italia have filled the Patidar community of Gujarat with anger and rage. This arrest has been made out of malice to seek revenge. The Patidar community will come together and teach the BJP a lesson in the assembly elections,” he said.

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