Gujarat court acquits BJP leader Hardik Patel in 2017 'anti-government speech' case

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By ETV Bharat English Desk

Published : Jan 19, 2024, 5:58 PM IST

Hardik Patel

Patel's lawyer Yashwant Vala said that the court accepted their arguments that his client had not violated condition number 14 of the permit given at the time by the then Collector. Patel was accused to have made anti-government speech at the Jan Kranti Mahasabha on Dec 3, 2017.

Surat: In a major relief for Gujarat BJP leader Hardik Patel, a court in Surat has acquitted Patel in a six-year-old case related to making “political speech” during a rally in Surat district, sources said. Confirming the development, Yashwant Vala, Hardik Patel's lawyer said that the court accepted their arguments in their defence in the case. Vala said that the case dates back to Dec 3, 2017 with regard to Jan Kranti Mahasabha.

Vala said that his client Patel had participated in a non-political meeting following a permission by the concerned Collector at the time. Following the speech, a case was registered against Hardik Patel for giving a speech “against the government” in this meeting. Hardik Patel was booked at the Sarthana police station arrested on 24 January 2019 and the police filed a charge sheet in the court on 26 January.

Testimony of 8 to 10 witnesses including the Collector was also recorded in the case. Hardik's lawyer further said that in the argument made by Hardik Patel in the court, it was not proved that condition number 14 of the permit was violated. “Hardik Patel did not give any speech in favor or against any party. Furthermore, there is no evidence on record that he delivered any speech in favor or against any candidate. After hearing the arguments of both the sides, today the court acquitted Hardik Patel,” he said.

As for the defendant Hardik Patel, the BJP leader while reacting to his acquittal, said, “Today I have been proved innocent in the case which was registered in Sarthana police station. I believe that in most of the cases I am being proven innocent. All the lawyers I have had have made correct arguments and arguments. I welcome this decision,” Patel said.

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