Keshubhai Patel wins Visavadar, but his Gujarat Parivartan Party loses

Keshubhai Patel

Ending a decade long stint in oblivion, former BJP CM Keshubhai Patel won, but his newly formed Gujarat Parivartan Party lost. In its maiden election the GPP earned two seats of total contested 177. As expected it remained effective in Saurashtra, inflicting most damage to the BJP but not sparing the Congress either.

Whereas in other Leuva Patel community dominated pockets in central, South and north Gujarat did not respond much to aggressive campaigning by this 84-year-year old and in these regions it remained straight contest largely between the BJP and Congress.

Winning Visavadar himself by huge margin of 42,186 votes against the BJP sitting MLA Kanu Bhalal, the two time CM proved he still roars land in Asiatic Lions. Adjacent Dhari constituency in Amreli district two has fallen in GPP kitty. However, its second in command and general secretary Gordhan Zadaphia, in Leuva Patel community dominated Gondal seat, lost to BJP Kshatriya candidate Jayrajsinh Jadeja by huge margin of 19,766 votes. The Congress had given this seat to ally NCP sitting MLA Chandu Vaghasiya, again a Leuva.

The BJP candidate Kashup Shukla lost urban seat of Rajkot East by thin margin of about 4,000 votes against Congress candidate Indranil Rajyaguru. Here GPP candidate Pravin Ambalia cornered 20,000 votes. Similarly in Jasdan, BJP sitting MLA Bharat Boghra lost to COngress candidate Bhola Ghohil by around 10,00 votes. The GPP candidate Devshi Tadadni here got over 7,000 votes.

While in Saurashtra it has caused damaged to the BJP in six Patel dominated constituencies and two others, the Congress on four constituencies suffered too as its vote bank was damaged by the GPP. However, in the region there were as many as six seats where the contest remained directly between Patel community candidates of BJP and Congress, even as the GPP was proved a non entity. And the BJPs overall thumping victory in the region, especially in Saurashtra, which saw section of RSS and VHP working for the GPP in mobilsing Leuva Patels coupled with proxy campaign under religious group of The Khodaldham Trust, is an indication that despite poor monsoon in this agriculture drive region, the Narendra Modi government passed the challenge from third front, of which Keshubhai had become face, with flying colours.

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