Bhupendra Patel is said to be a close aide of the current UP Governor and the former Chief Minister of Gujarat, Anandiben PatelBhupendra Patel
A stark feature of Narendra Modi’s second tenure as the Prime Minister of India has been the constant reshuffling of Chief Ministers of the Bhartiya Janata Party-ruled states. [More on this, here ]. The latest on this list has been the fortress of the BJP, Gujarat. Vijay Rupani was recently removed as the Chief Minister of the state and his replacement left everyone surprised. Bhupendra Patel, a first time MLA and a name no one had predicted to fill the shoes of the state Chief Minister.
Here are a few things about the new Chief Minister of Gujarat:
- Bhupendra Patel was elected to the Gujarat State assembly in the elections of 2017. He was pitted against Congress’s Shashikant Patel and not only did he emerge victorious, he won by a margin of over 1,00,000 votes, the highest in that election.
- Patel, who is said to be a close aide of the current UP Governor and the former Chief Minister of Gujarat, Anandiben Patel, belongs from the Patel or Patidar community of the state. Reportedly, it was this community that the BJP was trying to appease before the assembly elections that are scheduled for next year.
- In terms of formal education, Bhupendra Patel holds a Diploma in Civil Engineering from the Government Polytechnic College of Ahmedabad. Notably, ahead of the 2017 Gujarat assembly elections, he had declared assets worth Rs 5 crore, to the Election Commission of India.
- When political analysts began to predict as to who could replace Vijay Rupani after his exit, Patel’s name did not feature even in a single list. Even internal BJP sources did not have a clue about the candidate being him.
- The now Chief Minister of Gujarat has previously held the portfolio of Chairman in the Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA), besides heading a Standing Committee of Amdavad Municipal Corporation (AMC).
With respect to his political journey, Bhupendra Patel began in the 1990s from the Memnagar Nagarpallika in Ahmedabad. He later served as the president of this body from 1999-2000 and 2004-06. He also served as the Vice President of the AMC School Board from 2008-10. Interestingly, Patel held positions of power in the state of Gujarat during the tenures of all three previous Gujarat Chief Ministers, Narendra Modi, Anandiben Patel and Vijay Rupani.