Gujarat BJP MLA Inamdar quits; later says rethinking his decision after meeting party leaders

Ketan Inamdar
Ketan Inamdar

Vadodara | Gujarat Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Ketan Inamdar tendered his resignation from the state assembly on Tuesday morning, only to announce hours later that he was considering taking it back after meeting senior state party leaders in Gandhinagar.

Inamdar, a three-time MLA from Savli in Vadodara district, emailed his resignation to assembly Speaker Shankar Chaudhary in the wee hours, and said he was doing so after listening to his “inner voice,” and that nothing was bigger than self-respect.

Talking to reporters later in the day in his assembly constituency, the legislator, who was re-elected in December 2022 for a third term, said ordinary and old-time workers have not been taken care of by the ruling party.

The MLA asserted his move was not a pressure tactic and maintained he will work to ensure the victory of BJP candidate Ranjan Bhatt from the Vadodara Lok Sabha seat, where polling will take place on May 7.

He then rushed to the state capital Gandhinagar to meet Gujarat BJP president CR Paatil and in-charge minister for Vadodara Harsh Sanghavi.

After the meeting, Inamdar told media persons in the evening he has discussed certain issues with the state party leadership and was confident they will be resolved, and added he was considering withdrawing his resignation.

"My decision to resign was taken out of respect to my inner voice. As a party worker, I am satisfied after discussing the matter with the state president and in-charge minister, and am considering taking back my resignation," the lawmaker said.

The veteran legislator said in his resignation letter emailed to the speaker, he informed him that he was quitting the assembly membership after listening to his "inner voice."

"I was very clear about my decision to resign. When the state BJP leadership learnt about my resignation, they asked me as to what I meant by 'my inner voice'," he told media persons in Gandhinagar.

Without elaborating, Inamdar said he discussed all his issues with the state BJP president Paatil and Vadodara in-charge minister Sanghavi.

"Ratnakar Ji (General Secretary, Organisation, Gujarat BJP) also responded positively and assured me that all my issues will be resolved to my satisfaction and to the satisfaction of all party workers. We will sit down to resolve all issues," the MLA said.

Inamdar said in January 2020, when, too, he had resigned from the assembly, the BJP government and the party had resolved issues raised by him. In 2020, his resignation was not accepted by the then-speaker.

"This time also I am confident that the government and the organisation will resolve all issues to my satisfaction," he added.

Talking to reporters at Savli after tendering his resignation, Inamdar clarified his decision was not a pressure tactic.

“For a long time, I felt that small and old-time workers (associated with the party since long) have not been taken care of by the party. I have apprised the leadership of this,” the BJP leader said.

Inamdar said he has represented the Savli seat in the assembly for more than 11 years and has been a committed BJP worker ever since he joined the saffron party.

“But like I had said in 2020 too, there is nothing bigger than self-respect. And this is not the voice of Ketan Inamdar alone but of every single party worker. I have said earlier that old party workers should not be ignored,” he said.

“I will work day and night to ensure that our Lok Sabha poll candidate Ranjan Bhatt wins by the biggest margin (from Vadodara). But this resignation is the result of my inner voice,” the BJP legislator said earlier in the day.

After Inamdar resigned from the assembly in 2020, he had claimed senior government officials and ministers were ignoring him and his constituency (Savli) and that many MLAs in the saffron party were feeling “frustrated” just like him.

He was first elected to the assembly in 2012 after winning as an independent candidate from Savli. Inamdar later joined the BJP and won the seat in 2017 and again in the 2022 polls.

In December 2022, the BJP had won a massive mandate, winning 156 of the total 182 assembly

seats in Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Polling for all the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat will be held in a single phase on May 7 and votes will be counted on June 4. In 2019, the BJP had won all the 26 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

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