Hardik Patel is being portrayed as a messiah of Patel Community in Gujarat. A 22 year old messiah who has emerged, all of a sudden, in the political horizon, demanding OBC status to the Patels.
Is the picture that simple?
I don’t think so. There are questions which need to be answered first, before one can arrive at any simple conclusion.
Since most of our readers are young men and women, hence it seems logical to look at the emergence of Hardik Patel in detail.
Hardik Patel’s father is a BJP leader.
Up till some months ago, Hardik had also been a BJP worker.
Hardik Patel’s stand on Reservation is very confusing. For instance, he often demands the Nation to ‘get rid of the Quota’ and offer jobs to people on the basis of ability (this is BJP’s line on reservation). His party spokespersons even try to tag ‘Reservation in Jobs’ as unnecessary; as it was something (as they believe) which was thrust upon the country.
After the massive Rally, the Police targeted the media, broke their cameras and assaulted the media people. Why? I think, to present a picture of the police and the State Government as someone who are anti-rally. When media people are beaten, they assumed that the State Government is against Patel Reservation demand.
After the massive Rally in Ahmadabad, Police were being shown damaging property in non-Patel localities.
If Patels are given OBC status then close to 80 percent of people in Gujarat will come under the ambit of Reservation (Patels constituting 20 percent of the population). Although this will not happen, as Patels don’t fulfill the ‘Social discrimination’ criterion for Reservation; still as question arises — what is the primary motive behind Patel’s demand for reservation?
I think, the motive is simply to bring the Question of reservation back into the Nation’s discourse.
The forces behind Hardik Patel, seem to be acting on the trick that, if reservation is given to all, then it will automatically mean Reservation to none.
I think, this itself is a bad trick, as contrary to what is being propagated in the society; reservation is increasingly becoming irrelevant on the question of merit. I’ve studied the cut off marks for many State and Central recruitment exams, and have found that the gap between the cut-off marks for different categories is becoming lesser and lesser. That’s why any grudge or envy for Reservation is least required.
Under this light, it’s necessary to see the emergence of Hardik Patel and the demand for Patel reservation, as an attempt to deprive those castes who are given reservation by the Constitution.
Like it or not, the emergence of Hardik Patel, appears to be another mischievous ploy, to divide the Nation on the question of Reservation.
If that’s the case, then Reservation in jobs, is still something that must be protected at all costs.