BJP appoints a Patel as Gujarat party chief

Ahmedabad, Aug 10 (IANS) With Vijay Rupani being made Chief Minister, the BJP on Wednesday appointed Patel MLA from Bhavnagar West, Jitu Vaghani, as president of the state unit.

“BJP national president has appointed Vaghani Gujarat president with immediate effect. Party’s national general secretary Arun Singh has informed the same through a letter,” confirmed Gujarat BJP spokesman Bharat Pandya.

Vaghani, 46, replaced Vijay Rupani, who resigned the post of Gujarat BJP president a day before he took oath as Gujarat Chief Minister on Sunday.

In the 2012 assembly polls, Vaghani had become MLA for the first time. Though he fought earlier assembly election from the same constituency, he lost against senior Congress leader Shaktisinh Gohil.

Vaghani has earlier worked as the chief of the youth wing of the party and also as state BJP secretary. He was also active in Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and also remained Senate Member of Bhavnagar University for five years.

Apparently BJP’s national president Amit Shah zeroed in on Vaghani and did a balancing act by putting a Patel face to command state BJP affairs after Rupani, a non-Patel became the Chief Minister. Rupani belongs to Jain Bania community, which is less than one per cent of the state’s population.

Considered as a master strategist, BJP chief Shah did micro level social engineering by giving representation to both Leuva and Kadva sub-castes of Patel by making Vaghani as state BJP president and Nitin Patel as Deputy Chief Minister.

–IANS

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