Patidars unite to make GPBS a success

Mitul Paniker Tuesday 09th January 2018 11:44 EST

“Jay Sardar!” bellowed two different groups of young volunteers at the entrance of the grand Mahatma Mandir, in Gandhinagar as visitors made their way to the first-of-its-kind Global Patidar Business Summit (GPBS). Organised on the lines of the biannual Vibrant Gujarat Summit organised by the state government, the three-day event was inaugurated by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel.

The event saw over 10,000 businessmen from the Patidar community pledge to provide jobs to the millions of the community by 2026, on the opening day. Organised by Patel outfit, Sardardham, the event was not only massive in scale, but also came as a refreshing break. The three days comprised of talk sessions on various subjects, seminars, B2B sessions, and counselling for the community's youths. Lauding the organisers, CM Rupani said, “Sardardham is doing what the state government is supposed to do. It is the government’s responsibility to create jobs. I am glad the community has taken up that responsibility. This initiative would surely motivate other communities to work in this direction. Patidars and their contribution are at the core of Gujarat’s development. This event will guide people to become job givers and not just job seekers, and the state government is always with you.”

Sardardham also signed memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with several Patidar organisations to start coaching centres for IAS-IPS aspirants, industrial training centres and legal guidance centres.

The summit was like any normal summit, except for it was held by the Patels, so it had its own unique features. Slogans of “Jay Sardar” could be heard periodically from different corners of the venue. Given the community's sentiments towards Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, visitors became accustomed to constant chants throughout the day. Another interesting feature was the 'Sardar Prashad'. Plastic boxes generously filled with savouries and sweets, were given away to hundreds who came. The hygiene and quality maintained by the organisers were commending. Considering the magnitude of the event, it was surprising how well the whole affair was organised and co-ordinated.

Speakers included several top-shot businessmen like diamond merchant Ghanshyam Dholakia, Pankaj Patel of Zydus Cadilla, Padma Shri Mathurbhai Savani, Jaisukh Patel of Ajanta Aurora, and Pinakin Patel from the USA, amongst others.

Patidar Pride

During a seminar on the future of the industrial sector, Chandubhai Virani, owner of Balaji Wafers Pvt Ltd, spoke about the struggles he and his family had to face setting up the now Rs1800 Crore business. However, not in a single one of his bad days did he ever consider himself poor, or ask for money. Speaking about the attitude towards life, he advised his audience of over 300 to live with pride. “Dignity and arrogance are our wealth,” he said. The thought was shared by all other speakers, who stated that the Patidar pride was key to life was to live it with honour.

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