Hardik Patel never incited violence, lawyer says while seeking bail

Hardik Patel never incited violence, lawyer says while seeking bail

Ahmedabad: Seeking bail for jailed OBC quota agitation leader Hardik Patel, his lawyer on Friday argued in the High Court here that his client never instigated the people to resort to violence and had in fact appealed for peace.

Justice A J Desai is hearing Hardik’s bail plea. The young Patel leader is facing sedition cases in Ahmedabad and Surat.

Advocate Bharda today said Ahmedabad police misinterpreted Hardik’s speech at the GMDC ground rally here on August 25 last year where he invoked freedom-fighter Bhagat Singh `who threw a bomb at the British’.

“Hardik did not mean that he will uproot the government by bombing it. Hardik asked Patels to use their voting right as a `bomb’ to oust the government if the demand of reservation was not met,” the lawyer said.

The court later adjourned the hearing to April 28 when Hardik’s lawyer Zubin Bharda would continue his argument.

The bail applications of Hardik’s three aides — Ketan Patel, Chirag Patel and Dinesh Bambhaniya — also came up for hearing in Justice Desai’s court today.

They told the court that instead of their current lawyer, B M Mangukiya, they have now appointed advocate Vijay Patel. Their bail applications too will be heard on April 28.

Session courts in Surat and Ahmedabad had refused Hardik bail last month.

He and his three associates are accused of inciting the violence to mount pressure on Gujarat government for accepting the demand of reservations for the Patel community.

Hardik is at present lodged in Lajpore jail in Surat district.