Patidar leader Hardik Patel ended his hunger strike on the 19th day on Wednesday afternoon after two religious leaders of the community urged him to do so. The leaders told him that he must remain alive to continue his struggle, Patel wrote on Twitter.

Patel had started his fast unto death at his home on August 25 to demand reservation for his community under the Other Backward Classes category and farm loan waivers. He had then prepared a will, and was hospitalised for two days. He was discharged from hospital on Sunday but continued his protest.

“Hardik was determined to continue his fast,” said Manoj Panara, a leader of Patel’s group Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti. “However, we requested him to break the fast and fight against this government.”

The Gujarat government has not held any discussion with him during the protest.

Activist Prakash Ambedkar and Congress leader Harish Rawat visited him on Tuesday. Several political leaders such as former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda and former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav had earlier urged Patel to end his hunger strike, saying his “services are needed for this country to fight further for good causes”.