Engineer and first-time MLA Bhupendra Patel, who in a surprising move was chosen to be Gujarat’s next Chief Minister on Sunday, is all set to be sworn in to the seat on Monday.
After named by the BJP for the top post, the 59-year-old met Gujarat Governor Acharya Devvrat at the Raj Bhavan in Gandhinagar to stake claim to the position. He was accompanied by a delegation of BJP leaders including former chief minister Vijay Rupani.
The Governor has invited Patel to take oath as the state’s 17th chief minister at 2.20 pm on Monday.
“The newly appointed leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Legislature Party, Bhupendrabhai Patel, presented a proposal to form a new government under his leadership at the Raj Bhavan. Accepting the proposal, he was invited to take oath as the Chief Minister on September 13, 2021, at 2.20 pm,” the Governor tweeted on Sunday.
The swearing in ceremony will reportedly be attended by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
Patel, a civil engineer by profession and an MLA from the Ghatlodia constituency, is also the first member from the Patidhar community to be the chief minister. His elevation just before the Assembly polls in 2022 is being seen as a ploy by the BJP to woo the community which has fewer takers for the saffron party.
Known as a close confidante of former Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel, Patel in 2017 contested the elections on her seat after she was appointed the Governor of Madhya Pradesh. He defeated Congress’ Shashikant Patel by the highest-known margin of more than a lakh votes.
Patel is a trustee of Patidhar bodies Sardar Dham and Vishwa Umiya Foundation. He has also served as the municipal councilor of Ahmedabad and the chairperson of the Standing Committee of Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation and Ahmedabad Urban Development Authority (AUDA).