Ahmedabad, September 11
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Saturday resigned from the post, over a year before the state goes to polls.
It is not clear what prompted the development in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state, where elections to the 182-member Assembly are due in December next year.
Rupani (65) was sworn in as Chief Minister for the second time in a row in December 2017.
“I have resigned as Chief Minister of Gujarat,” Rupani told reporters after meeting Governor Acharya Devvrat and submitting his resignation letter.
“I was allowed to serve the state for five years. I have contributed to the development of the state. I will further do whatever is asked by my party,” Rupani said.
“In the BJP, there has been a tradition that responsibilities of party workers change from time to time. I will be ready to take whatever responsibility that the party will give me in the future,” Rupani said.
“I thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi for giving a common worker like me this opportunity to serve the people of the state as Chief Minister,” Rupani said.
Rupani, along with state BJP in-charge Bhupendra Yadav, Union ministers Purshottam Rupala and Mansukh Mandaviya, and state Cabinet colleagues Deputy CM Nitin Patel, Bhupndrasinh Chudasama and Pradeepsinh Jadeja, met the Governor and submitted the resignation.
Asked about reasons for his resignation, Rupani said, “In the BJP, it is like a relay race for party workers. One gives the baton to the other.” On who will be the next Chief Minister, Rupani said that the party would decide about it.
He denied that he had any differences with state BJP president C R Paatil.
Rupani comes from the Jain community which has around two per cent population in the state. There is speculation that his successor may be from the Patidar community.
Rupani had first taken over as Chief Minister on August 7, 2016, from Anandiben Patel. He led the Gujarat BJP to victory in the 2017 Assembly elections.
Rupani, who completed five years in office on August 7 this year, was present at the inauguration on Saturday of Sardardham Bhavan where Modi was present virtually.