18/12/2017 12:55 PM IST | Updated 18/12/2017 5:22 PM IST

Dalit Leader Jignesh Mevani Wins By A Landslide In Gujarat's Vadgam

This was his maiden election.

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
VADGAM, INDIA - DECEMBER 11: An independent candidate Jignesh Mevani greets people during election Campaign on December 10, 2017 in Vadgam, India. (Photo by Kunal Patil/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Dalit leader Jignesh Mevani has arrived with a bang. The independent candidate is swept the elections in Vadgam constituency with a huge victory over Bharatiya Janata Party rival Vijaykumar Harkhabhai. At over 95,000 votes, the 37-year-old won his first election by a huge margin of 20,000 votes.

"Fascism is fascism. It will ruin our country if we stay silent any longer," Mevani told HuffPost India's Betwa Sharma last week.

Vadgam is one of the dozen constituencies reserved for members of the scheduled caste community in Gujarat.

Congress had withdrawn its candidate from Vadgam to help Mevani in the contest. Congress had won the seat in the last three elections. Aam Aadmi Party too announced in a statement that it would not field a candidate from Vadgam.

Mevani, a law graduate and former journalist, had emerged as a leader of a Dalit agitation in Gujarat after four Dalit men were tied to a car and beaten up in Una for skinning a dead cow.

"Shock therapy needs to be given to some individuals from upper castes," he had said at the time.

A year later, Mevani appears to have kept his promise.

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