BJP Rebel Ahead Of Gujarat Polls

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A Gujarat MLA who recently quit the BJP, has threatened to “shoot” anyone who “misbehaves” with “my people”. Madhu Shrivastav, accused in a case linked to the 2002 Gujarat riots, is contesting as an Independent after the party denied him a ticket.  

“I will fight independently. If anyone misbehaves with any of my people, I will shoot them,” he said today at a rally in Vadodara’s Waghodia.  

Madhu Shrivastav is the sitting BJP MLA from Waghodia, Vadodara. A land developer by profession, he is a co-accused in the Best Bakery case, in which 18 people from the Muslim community were burnt alive. He has eight other cases pending against him.

In 2008, he was arrested by the Vadodara police for allegedly creating nuisance in public spaces. In 2014, he made a Gujarati movie called “Lion of Gujarat” in which he starred as the hero.

A six-time MLA, Madhu Shirivastav has said that he rues joining the BJP 25 years ago at “Narendra Modi and Amit Shah’s insistence”.

“I didn’t come to the BJP on my own. When I won by a huge margin in 1995, Narandra Modi and Amit Shah came to request me to join the BJP. That’s the only reason I joined the party,” he claimed while speaking to NDTV over phone.

PM Modi was a BJP functionary at the time, and later became the Chief Minister. Mr Shah, now the Union Home Minister, too, was a state-level politician then.

Sources said Madhu Shrivastav is one of the six rebels who refused to meet state minister Harsh Sanghavi, deputed to bring them around, over the past few days.

Along with him, another senior leader of the BJP has rebelled. Former Padra MLA Dinu Mama has also held rallies, announcing that he would contest as an Independent.

Ahead of the Gujarat elections, the BJP has dropped 38 sitting MLAs, including five ministers and the speaker of the assembly. The party has released its first list of 160 candidates. Elections will be held on the state’s 182 assembly seats on December 1 and 5.

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