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AIMIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi to Hold Mega Rally in Kolkata Ahead of Bengal Polls

File photo of AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi. (PTI)

File photo of AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi. (PTI)

AIMIM’s rally is likely to leave TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee worried because Bengal has nearly 31 percent Muslim vote share.

Sujit Nath

All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi is planning to hold a mega political rally at Kolkata’s Iconic Brigade Parade ground in January.

Speaking to News18, AIMIM's West Bengal president Zameerul Hassan said, “Soon we are planning to organise a mega rally at Brigade Parade ground in Kolkata in January where Asaduddin Owaisi will deliver his speech. The date is yet to be finalised. We will soon announce the date.”

Citing reasons behind the rally, Zameerul Hassan said, “I am working to strengthen AIMIM in Bengal from February 24, 2017. We felt that Muslims are deprived of their basic rights and therefore we have decided to work for Muslims’ rights in Bengal. We are not against TMC but we are against the BJP. As we are gearing up to contest the upcoming assembly polls, it is up to Mamata Banerjee to consider us as her friend or enemy.”

In the context of Owaisi’s visit to Bengal on January 3, he added, “I was not informed about his visit to Bengal. He came suddenly as he planned to visit Bengal a night before his flight on December 3. He went back on the same day in the evening”.

It was also learnt that Owaisi had a word with Pirzada Abbas Siddiqui, an influential Muslim cleric of Furfura Sharif located in Jangipara in Hooghly district, on the evening of December 2.

Initially it was decided that Owaisi and Abbas Siddiqui will discuss poll related issues over video conference. However, it was Owaisi who took a sudden decision to visit Bengal and on December 3, he took a flight to Kolkata to meet Siddiqui.

Later Owaisi addressed the media and said, “Abbas Siddiqui is elder to us and we have decided to contest the upcoming polls together.”

In 2019, TMC got 43 per cent votes (despite losing 12 seats) which is 5 percent more as compared to 2014 Lok Sabha. In 2014, TMC got 34 seats, while in 2019 it managed to secure only 22 seats. But despite losing 12 seats, TMC’s vote share has increased because they got the full support of Muslims.

On the other hand, in 2016 Assembly BJP’s vote share was 12 percent and in 2019 Lok Sabha it went up to 39 percent. There was an increase of 27 per cent vote share mainly because of Hindus coalescing towards the BJP.

AIMIM’s rally is likely to leave TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee worried because Bengal has nearly 31 percent Muslim vote share and they were the deciding factor behind the Left till Banerjee came to power in Bengal in 2011.

Now with Owaisi’s entry in Bengal, AIMIM is likely to take away some share of Banerjee’s Muslim votes if his alliance with Abbas Siddiqui continues smoothly.

The party has already appointed three persons in-charge of Bengal to look into the poll affairs and they are former Mayor of Hyderabad Municipality Mohammad Majid Hussain, State AIMIM president Zameerul Hassan and AIMIM national spokesperson Asim Waqar.


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