Political developments are in full swing in Gujarat where polling will be held by the end of the year.
A day after Congress extended its invitation to Patel quota agitation leader Hardik Patel and Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani to meet party vice-president Rahul Gandhi during his visit in Ahmedabad on Monday, a senior member of the Hardik Patel-led group, campaigning for reservations for the Patel community, has alleged that he was offered Rs 1 crore to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The claim came hours after Narendra Patel, flanked by prominent BJP leaders, announced Sunday evening that he was joining the BJP.
“I was offered Rs 1 crore to join the Bharatiya Janata Party. I have already been given Rs 10 lakh advance,” Narendra Patel said.
Narendra Patel further said that Varun Patel took him to a meeting where it was discussed that he will be given Rs 1 crore and received the money from his hands.
The charge has been denied by Varun Patel.
“Varun Patel made a Rs 1 crore-deal with BJP for me. He gave 10 lakh rupees in advance. They are going to be give me Rs 90 lakh rupees tomorrow (Monday) but even if they give me the entire Reserve Bank (of India) they will not be able to buy me,” he said, dramatically spreading out the bundles of cash that he said were handed over to him, at a late-night press conference on Sunday.
Varun Patel was a key aide of Hardik Patel, who spearheaded the Patidar reservation movement. Varun along with Reshma Patel, another former Hardik Patel aide, joined the BJP earlier this weekend.
Narendra said he had decided to take the money and parade it before the media to expose Varun Patel and the BJP.
He also displayed bundles of Rs 500 notes that he claimed were part of the Rs 10 lakh that he was advanced on his Rs 1 crore deal.
The BJP is yet to react to Narendra Patel’s sensational claims.
The developments come just as the Election Commission of India (ECI) gets ready to announce dates for assembly election in Gujarat.