Gandhinagar | Jagran Politics Desk: Amid the buzz of him joining the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) months ahead of the Gujarat assembly elections 2022, senior Congress leader Hardik Patel on Monday said he is 'upset' with the state party leadership, and asked leaders to work together with "honest and strong" people and assign them key positions.

"I'm not upset with Rahul Gandhi or Priyanka Gandhi," clarified the 28-year-old Gujarat Congress Working President.

"People who work on the rural level to strengthen the party should be given opportunities. It's poll time, go to villages, work hard in cities. As far as being upset is concerned, questions come up in a family, and talks are held. I clarified earlier too to not spread rumours," news agency ANI quoted Patel as saying.

Assembly elections are slated to take place in Gujarat later this year. In the previous elections in 2017, he Congress had won 77 seats while the BJP secured another term by bagging 99 constituencies in the 182-member legislative assembly. 

The Congress believes it would be able to topple the BJP from power in Gujarat with help from Patel. However, rumours were doing rounds that Patel might resign from Congress and join the BJP ahead of the 2022 assembly polls.

On Friday, Patel, however, had refuted reports of him joining the BJP. Although, he had stated that he welcomes the political decisions taken by the saffron party recently, including the abrogation of Article 370 from Jammu and Kashmir, and the construction of Ram Temple in Ayodhya.

"News of my leaving Congress and joining the BJP has been circulating in the news for a long time. But under the present circumstances, joining the BJP is out of the question. I've no plans to join BJP. I welcome the political decisions that have been taken by BJP recently," Patel said.

"The Opposition has to worry about the people. If we fail in the opposition, people are looking for alternatives. We have to think of changing our strategy, I will say on the day when the political decision is ready. I come from a Raghuvanshi family, I have Hindutva. We have been associated with Hindutva for thousands of years. I have spoken of my concerns to the party. I hope the High Command will listen to me," he said.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma