Ahmedabad, Dec 16: Two days ahead of results of Gujarat Assembly elections, Patidar leader Hardik Patel today predicted a defeat for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The 24-year-old PAAS leader said that the exit poll predictions of saffron party sweeping results will be proved wrong. After the voting ended on December 14, several exit polls predicted that the BJP may win 102 to 150 seats in Gujarat assembly elections.
Hardik Patel expressed doubts over the functioning of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs). He added if the EVMs do not malfunction, the BJP will witness a humiliating defeat. “I think Exit Polls results will turn out to be false. If EVMs do not malfunction then BJP will lose the election. I have 100% doubts on EVMs,” ANI quoted Patel as saying.
However, the young leader appeared perplexed after the Supreme Court’s ruling on Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines. “Why are VVPATs used in the first place? It is used for smooth counting of votes wherever there is a fault. I did not understand Supreme Court’s stand on the issue,” said Patel. The apex court had rejected a plea seeking counting of 25 percent voter slips before announcing the results.
Patel led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) and the Congress had fought the Gujarat Assembly elections in a tacit understanding. The grand old party has promised reservation in government jobs and educational institutions for the Patidar Community.
The Election Commission will conduct the counting of votes on December 18.