Ahmedabad: Quota agitation leader Hardik Patel was released on bail from a jail in Surat on Friday and the police has granted permission to the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) to organise a road show for the stir leader.
Patel walked out of Lajpore Jail on Friday morning, nearly nine months after he was arrested in connection with two cases of sedition and a case of violence at Visnagar lawmaker's office during the quota stir last year.
Hardik, after stepping out of the jail, told reporters that he has vowed to continue his agitation to get reservation for his community under the OBC quota.
In an apparent reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's '56-inch-chest' remark made during 2014 election campaign, Hardik said, "I want to say that I don't want height, weight or a 56-inch chest. All I want is rights for my community."
"Our agitation will continue in coming days. Our demand for OBC status for Patels is still there. In coming days, there will be a change in the style of our working, but, our attitude (tevar) will remain the same," Hardik said.
Last week, the Gujarat High Court granted him bail on condition that he will stay out of the state for a period of next six months and will leave Gujarat within 48 hours after his release from jail.
PAAS had sought permission from Surat Police to organise a road show of Mr Patel in various areas of the city after felicitating him outside the jail in morning.
While granting the permission, Surat Police Commissioner Ashish Bhatia asked the organisers not to indulge in any activity which may cause law and order problem.
"We have granted them (organisers) permission to organise a road show with Hardik. We have asked them to follow all the conditions laid down by the High Court. We have also asked the leaders not to use any inflammatory or defamatory words in their speeches during the road show," the commissioner said.
Surat PAAS convener Nikhil Savani has clarified that no public meeting will be held in Surat as announced on Wednesday.
"Earlier, we had planned to hold a public meeting also. But, we have dropped that idea and sought permission for the road show only. We will make sure that it does not create any trouble for anyone," he said.
As per schedule released by PAAS, Mr Patel's caravan will pass through different parts of Surat city, including Bhestan, Ring Road, Kapodra, Mini Bazar and Varachha area, which are mostly dominated by Patels.
Meanwhile, Mr Patel shot off a letter from jail asking his supporters to ensure that his felicitation does not create any law and order problems.
In his letter, which was shared with media by PAAS, Mr Patel said, "I learned that a large number of people will gather outside the jail to receive me. It is my humble request to my supporters to maintain law and order. Patel community believes in non-violence. We must try to maintain peace"....