A local court in Gujarat on Wednesday held Hardik Patel, Patidar quota agitation leader, and two of his aides guilty and sentenced them to two years in jail in a rioting case in which a mob led by him attacked a BJP legislator’s office in Visnagar town in 2015.
The Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti leader along with Lalji Patel and A.K. Patel has been found guilty of rioting, arson, damage to property and unlawful assembly. Besides the sentence of imprisonment, the three have been fined Rs. 50,000. The court, however, granted bail to them with direction that they will have to file an appeal in the High Court within a month.
In the complaint lodged against 18 persons, Mr. Hardik was named as a key accused as he led a rally that turned violent, resulting in damage to property and assault on some media persons. He and 17 others were accused of being part of a mob of around 500 from the Patel community which turned violent and vandalised Rushikesh Patel’s office, attacked journalists, and rioted. The incident occurred on July 23, 2015 when the Patel agitation demanding quotas in jobs and education was at its peak.
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