Ahmedabad, Feb 2: For the first time in six months, Patel reservation agitation spearhead Hardik Patel was on Tuesday granted bail by a local court in a case without the Gujarat Police opposing his application for it.
Patel, who continues to be in jail for as much time on serious charges of sedition in Ahmedabad and Surat, in this case, was booked for allegedly instructing his supporters to lay road blocks on the national highway passing Surat.
His bail application was heard and granted by a Surat metropolitan court without opposition by the Gujarat Police.
After the 22-year-old convener of the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) was detained ahead of the India-South Africa one-day cricket match in Rajkot on October 18, some of his supporters, including PAAS' Surat convener Alpesh Kathiria blocked the national highway as a protest.
Patel was booked for instructing his activists to do this and charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code.
On October 19, police in Surat arrested him on the charges of sedition for allegedly inciting fellow activist Vipul Desai to kill a handful of policemen instead of thinking of committing suicide.
Desai, who falls from the Patel community, had publicly said that he felt like killing himself since the Gujarat government was not conceding their demand for quota to the Patels in jobs and education under the OBC category. Hardik Patel had then gone to see Desai along with a local TV channel reporter and told him not to think of suicide and instead go out and kill a few policemen in protest. After the TV channel aired this, it went viral on the social media.
Besides this, Patel, who has been lodged in Lajpore jail in Surat since October 18, faces another sedition charge in an Ahmedabad court.