Bengaluru, Sep 04, 2018 : Former Karnataka Chief Minister HD Deve Gowda, in a heartfelt letter, pleaded with Patidar reservation leader Hardik Patel to call off his fast unto death, stating that the youth leader’s services “are needed to this country to fight further for good causes”.
Deve Gowda also wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging his intervention in Hardik Patel’s fast before the youth leader’s death.
Hardik Patel began an indefinite fast at his home in Ahmedabad, Gujarat on 25 August, stating that he wouldn’t eat till his demand for reservation for members of the Patel community in public employment and educational institutions was met.
"I came to know that day by day your health is deteriorating. You are young and energetic. Your services are needed to this country to fight further for good causes. I take this opportunity in expressing my advice to you to stop the hunger strike immediately." - HD Deve Gowda, Former Chief Minister, Karnataka
Since 25 August, when Patel began his indefinite fast, several leaders of the opposition have met with him and expressed their support for his cause.
State Aam Aadmi Party leaders visited Patel the day he began his fast and delivered a letter of support from the party’s national convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. Dalit leader and Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani also visited Patel and expressed support the same day, PTI reported.
Representatives of the Nationalist Congress Party, the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Trinamool Congress, as well as former Bihar chief minister and Hindustani Awami Morcha (HAM) chief Jitan Ram Manjhi and Leader of Opposition in the Gujarat Assembly Paresh Dhanani of the Congress have visited Patel since then.
Patel was forced to stage the fast at his Ahmedabad home after state BJP leaders refused permission for the fast at a public venue, PTI reported.
Hardik Patel Makes Last Will and Testament, Expresses Desire to Donate Eyes
In another turn of events, Patel made his last will and testament on 2 September, dividing his property among his parents, his sister, and 14 youths killed during the quota agitation in 2015 apart from leaving some for a ’Panjrapole’ (shelter for ill and old cows) near his village, a Patidar spokesperson said.
"Hardik Patel has expressed his wish to donate his eyes in case of his death," Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) spokesperson Manoj Panara told reporters in Ahmedabad on 2 September.
Supporters of Hardik Patel claimed that police lathi-charged them when they went to meet him at his home on Sunday, 2 September, The Times of India reported.