Patidar quota agitation leader Hardik Patel Sunday tied the knot with his childhood friend Kinjal Parikh at a ceremony in Gujarat. The 25-year-old convener of the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) married Kinjal Parikh at a temple in Digsar village of Surendranagar district, around 130 kms from Ahmedabad, in the presence of close relatives and friends. "This is the beginning of the second innings of my family life. My resolution is that everyone should get equal opportunity. We have one pledged to fight together for the 'navnirman' (reconstruction) of the country.
"We will fight till the end of our breath for truth, for the people and for right to equality," Patel told reporters after the marriage ceremony.
Patel said he was in love with Kinjal Parikh, who is pursuing a course in law, since long and the marriage was later arranged by their family members.
Both Patel and his wife are natives of Viramgam in Ahmedabad district though the newly married bride's family lives in Surat.
Her father, Dilip Parikh, who deals in real estate, told reporters the two families knew each other since the last three decades. "We did not hesitate while deciding on the marriage," he said. Patel is facing a sedition case in the state for which he had spent nearly six months in jail. The case was filed in connection with the quota agitation.
He spearheaded the Patidar community's state-wide agitation to demand reservation in government jobs and educational institutes. Patel was let out on bail but on the condition that he will not enter Mehsana district. His father Bharat Patel said the marriage ceremony was earlier planned at a temple in Mehsana but had to be cancelled.
Both families have also rejected the rumours that it was an inter-caste wedding. Patel senior says that, “she (the bride) is Parikh Patel and belongs to our Patidar community only.” Kinjil Parikh used to study with Hardik Patel’s sister Monica Patel. In 2016, the quota leader’s parents had announced his engagement, while he was still lodged in prison. According to Times of India report, Kinjil Parikh is a commerce graduate and is currently pursuing LLB from Gandhinagar.