Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani resigns ahead of Dec 2022 polls

Our Bureau. Ahmedabad | Updated on September 12, 2021

A new leadership with renewed energy will lead the State, says Rupani

With just 15 months to go for Gujarat Assembly polls, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani tendered his resignation on Saturday paving the way for "a new leadership with renewed energy" to lead the State.

In less than two months, this is the third instance for a BJP-ruled state undergoing a change of face at the helm of affairs. Earlier in July, BS Yediyurappa and Tirath Singh Rawat had stepped down as Chief Ministers of Karnataka and Uttarakhand respectively.

Rupani, 65, submitted his resignation to Gujarat Governor Acharya Devvrat in Gandhinagar in presence of Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, Central BJP leader Bhupendra Yadav and Rupani's Cabinet colleagues in Gujarat Government.

"I believe that now is the time, Gujarat's development journey needs to be led by a new leadership with renewed zeal and energy under the leadership the Prime Minister. Considering this, I have resigned from the post of Chief Minister of Gujarat," Rupani told media persons after his resignation in the afternoon.

Gujarat BJP spokesperson Yamal Vyas informed that a team of observers will visit Gujarat on Sunday and subsequently a new leader will be decided.

The sudden political development has brought an end to the speculations around the leadership change in Gujarat.

Discontent from the Patidar community - a strong voter base for the ruling party, criticism on Covid-19 management during the Second Wave and the rise of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in the State which had made inroads by winning a few local body elections earlier this year emerged as some factors playing against Rupani.

After emerging as the main opposition party in Surat civic body, AAP has started spreading its wings in Gujarat. In June this year, Delhi Chief Minister and AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal had announced that the Delhi-based party will contest on all seats in Gujarat polls, due in December 2022.

Other issues

Other issues including farmers' discontent over the procurements, delayed relief for Tauktae cyclone and reportedly strained relations with the State BJP unit chief C R Paatil besides the strong caste calculations did not seem favouring the Jain leader from Rajkot anymore.

Rupani was made Gujarat Chief Minister immediately after the incumbent Anandiben Patel had resigned mid-term in August 2016 following the Patidar reservation agitation in the State. In the following year, in 2017, Rupani led the party to win State Assembly polls with thin majority of 99 seats in the 182-seat Gujarat Assembly. After bypolls, BJP currently holds 112 seats in the house with Congress tally has now reduced to 65 from 77.

Congress termed the development as the result of the ruling party's overall failure in managing the state. "By changing a Chief Minister won't change the situation in the State. The resignation is to hide government's failures on issues of corruption, inflation and covid mismanagement," said Amit Chavda, President of Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee.

Published on September 11, 2021

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