At a late-night meeting in Ahmedabad on Wednesday, the Congress gave the Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti three options to secure reservations for the community, PTI reported.
The community has been agitating in the state for quotas in educational institutions and jobs. Last month, Patel told the Congress he would support it in the upcoming Assembly elections in December only if the party committed to giving the community reservations.
Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal met the Patidar leaders at 11.30 pm. The meeting ended at 2 am, according to the report. “We have been given three options for reservations for our community,” Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti convener Dinesh Bambhania said after the meeting.
While Bambhania did not talk about the three options, he said the Congress’ proposal did not alter the existing 49% reservations for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes in the state. “The options will be kept confidential till we discuss it with Hardik, social leaders of the community and legal experts,” Bambhania said.
“It was a long discussion and we exchanged several things,” Sibal said according to The Times of the India. “But it cannot be discussed with the media.”
Sibal said the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party had “very little understanding about the constitution”, when asked about their refusal to give the Patidars reservation. “But as far as the question of quota is concerned, we will try to find out some possible way,” Sibal said.
On October 21, the Congress had invited Patel to join hands to fight the Bharatiya Janata Party in the Assembly elections in Gujarat.