BJP's Bhupendra Patel was on Sunday elected as the new Chief Minister of Gujarat. The newly elected CM arrived at the governor’s house in Gandhinagar to meet Acharya Devvrat at Raj Bhavan.
This development comes ahead of the upcoming Gujarat polls that are scheduled to be held in 2022. In 2017, Bhupendra Patel was the chairman of the Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority. He was chosen to contest his first election in 2017. Now, he is a surprise choice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the next Chief Minister of Gujarat.
With this, it can be seen that Bhupendra Patel has been maintaining as low-profile a politician as one can be.
Till Sunday morning, Patel had nearly around 14,000 followers on Twitter and was hardly in contention for the top chair, if one went by the speculation in the media. He was also seen planting a sapling in his constituency with a handful of supporters and then holding a small organisational meeting before he is said to have learnt that he was to be the choice as the next CM.
News 18 reported that Patel did not even catch people's attention when he reached the BJP MLAs meeting at 3pm, sat towards the end of the hall and his name was then announced as the unanimous choice as the new CM.
Bhupendra Patel, the first Kadva Patel to become Gujarat CM:
Though BJP choosing Patel as the new Chief Minister of Gujarat came as a surprise, the choice makes more political sense. Besides being a Patidar, the community BJP wants to be by its side in the next elections, Patel is also a Kadva Patel, which forms nearly 12.4 percent of Gujarat’s population.
In fact, the new CM pick is the first Kadva Patel to become the Chief Minister of Gujarat.
It is reportedly said that this community is dominant in North Gujarat and Saurashtra, and opens a new political narrative for the BJP in the upcoming polls.
However, if one travels down the history of Gujarat CMs, the Patel CMs of Gujarat were all Leuva Patels. Bhupendra Patel also has a good hold over various Patidar associations.
In becoming the CM, Bhupendra Patel has clearly superseded a host of leaders in the state, effectively sealing the future of the likes of Deputy CM Nitin Patel, who saw himself as the biggest Patidar face in the state.
Bhupendra Patel, took over her assembly seat of Ghatlodia from his mentor Anandiben Patel in the assembly election in 2017 and by a huge margin, polling 72 per cent of the total votes.
Patel also thanked Prime Minister Modi, BJP national president JP Nadda and Union Home Minister Amit Shah for reposing faith in him and also thanked Anandiben Patel for supporting him in the past. The civil engineer, hence, already seems to have struck a fine balance.