MeraNews Network, Gandhinagar: Hardik Patel had on Monday morning appeared at the Gheekanta metro court in Ahmedabad to give his witness statement for the hearing on the lathi-charge on Patidar community members and journalists who had gathered at the GMDC ground on August 25, 2015, to attend a massive rally called by Patel.

In his statement recorded in the court today, he said, “What happened on the evening of August 25, 2015, is nothing less like the Jallianwala Baug massacre. There were around 2000 people in the ground at that time when the police administration sent the forces that numbered somewhere around 15 to 16 thousand jawans to attack them. They did lathi-charge on them injuring many. Suffering injustice is against my belief. When the youth who got scared of this impromptu attack rushed towards the stage, Vastrapur Police inspector Shaikh, Sector 1 PI Rajiv Ranjan Bhagat and another police official JC Patel followed them. They used the most unparliamentary language, laden with expletives which I cannot utter with respect to the people present here.”

Three years ago, in what was their largest ever demonstration titled the Kranti Rally, thousands of people from the Patidar community had gathered at the GMDC ground in Ahmedabad to agitate against the government, seeking Other Backward Class (OBC) status for the community. Later in the evening, several incidents of violence and arson were reported across different districts of Gujarat. Curfew had to be imposed and mobile internet services were shut down to stem rumor-mongering. The violence had left crores of worth public and private properties damaged.

Hardik also added, “The Indian constitution gives freedom of speech and protest to every citizen of the country, and the gathering of people on August 25, 2015, was just that, where we congregated under my leadership since morning to protest against the government and demand reservation for the Patidar community. It was a peaceful protest, similar to the more than 200 odd rallies I had conducted across Gujarat. It was the youth who were angry with the government.”

Click here to read this in Gujarati. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for news updates.