BJP worker elected as Sarpanch where alleged dalit assault happened

30 Dec, Una: Mota Samadhiyala, a village in Una taluka of Gir Somnath district where seven Dalits were assaulted allegedly by “gau rakshaks” for skinning a dead cow in July elected a BJP worker as Sarpanch. The incident which caused a political furore with many leaders jumping into the controversy to take on BJP and PM Modi.

While Dhanjibhai Korat defeated incumbent sarpanch Praful Korat , who had pledged allegiance to Congress, his supporters won six of the eight wards of the panchayat. Even the lone ward reserved for Dalits went to Dhanjibhai’s supporter Ramesh Sarvaiya, who is a relative of Balu Sarvaiya — one of the victims of the alleged gau rakshaks’ assault.

Dhanjibhai is a registered BJP worker even if panchayat elections are not fought on party symbols. He secured 468 votes, while Praful got only 212 votes — 22 less than Independent candidate Bhavesh Korat, who was polled 234 votes.

Union Minister M Venkaiah Naidu posted the following message on his facebook account:

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Posted by M Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday, December 31, 2016