Despite the protests from the Kshatriya community in Gujarat, Parshottam Rupala, Union minister for Animal Husbandry and Dairying filed his nomination papers on Tuesday at Rajkot where the BJP Loksabha candidate asked the Kshatriyas to have a “large heart” and support him in “national interest.”

“When so many leaders of the Kshatriya community have come forward to support me and are seated on the dais, I thank them. I want to request the entire community that I need their support too. So keeping in mind the interest of the entire nation, I request you to keep a large heart and join in to support the BJP,” he said while addressing a public gathering ahead of him filing his nomination.

The remarks from Rupala come just a couple of days after the Kshatriya community held a massive convention in Rajkot and gave the BJP an “ultimatum” till April 19, to withdraw the candidature of Rupala over his alleged derogatory remarks against the community. In his affidavit filed with his nomination papers on Tuesday, Rupala has stated that he and his wife does not own any vehicle, but owns a fire-arm of foreign-make for self-defence, costing ₹89,500.  

During his speech at Rajkot on Tuesday Rupala also thanked businessmen from Ahmedabad and Surat to come out in his support on a day of him filing his nomination papers. He also heaped praises on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for implementing social welfare schemes. Earlier in the day, Rupala took out a rally in Rajkot city where former Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani accompanied him.