Ahmedabad: A Gujarat High Court judge Wednesday recused himself from hearing a plea of Patidar community leader Hardik Patel seeking a stay on his conviction in a 2015 rioting case.
The 25-year-old had joined the Congress at a party rally in Gandhinagar on Tuesday and expressed his desire to contest the Lok Sabha polls. "Not before me," Justice R P Dholaria said while recusing himself. In July last year, a sessions court had sentenced Patel to two years' imprisonment for rioting and arson in Visnagar town in 2015, when the Patidar quota stir started gaining momentum in the state. Due to the conviction by the court in Mehsana district's Visnagar, Patel was barred from contesting polls, as per the Supreme Court order. Therefore, the Patidar leader had moved the high court seeking a stay on the conviction. Though the high court granted him bail and suspended his two-year sentence in August last year, his conviction was not stayed by the court.