Congress Leader Hardik Patel who was recently joined the party has been denied a stay on his conviction in the Mehsana rioting case of 2015.

As a result of this decision by the Gujarat High Court, Patel, a star campaigner for the Congress party will be unable to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections as per the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

Hardik was sentenced in July 2018 to two years of imprisonment by a sessions court in Visnagar for rioting and arson during the Patidar quota agitation. He was later granted bail by the High Court and his sentence was suspended.

The court also observed that Patel has 17 FIRs and several other criminal cases against him. It also took into account that his conviction was not stayed in 2018 and thus rejected his plea.

This move comes at a time when both parties are trying their best to get even the slightest advantage and with Congress losing a star campaigned in Gujarat, it is sure to hurt their prospects for the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha elections.