Gujarat Polls: Owaisi’s AIMIM Fighting for Political Empowerment of Muslims, Dalits in Maiden Turn

Political parties in Gujarat are at their best ahead of the December 1 assembly elections as campaigning for the first phase of polling comes to an end. Among them all of Hyderabad India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) is contesting elections in the state for the first time and party president Asaduddin Owaisi has been campaigning for the last 25 days.

Talking about the response so far, AIMIM national spokesperson Waris Pathan told News18, “We are contesting the Gujarat assembly elections for the first time. We are contesting only on 13 seats. Earlier, we had contested the civic polls a year back, where 23 of our corporators were elected. We have a presence here.

He said, ‘If you see the public meetings of our chief Asaduddin Owaisi in Gujarat, you will find that the crowd is more in comparison to other parties. We don’t pay anyone to come and listen to us. We have received an overwhelming response from people. Only time will tell whether this will translate into votes.

The former Byculla MLA said the main objective of the party was to empower the people. “We want political empowerment of Muslims, Dalits, Adivasis. There has not been a single Muslim MP from Gujarat since 1984. Neither the Congress nor the BJP did anything for the welfare of the people. If you look at Muslim and Dalit areas, you will find that there has been no development. We are a national party that wants to work for the upliftment of these communities and strengthen democracy. We hope that people will shower love on us like they did during the corporation elections.

Pathan has been campaigning with Owaisi for nearly 25 days. They have gone to Surat, Ahmedabad, Godhra and Bhuj and will be there till December 3. Councilors from Telangana and many other teams are making the campaign possible in Gujarat.

On the allegation that AIMIM is there to cut off Congress votes, Pathan said: “People were voting for Congress for so many years because there was no alternative. The party has remained silent on issues like Hijab, Madrassa, NRC, Bilkis Bano and others. Only Owaisi has been raising the voice of the voiceless. This is what we are fighting the elections for.”

“Congress shows love for Muslims just before elections. Where were they when Muslim boys were lynched by the police in Kheda? We are contesting only 13 seats out of 169. They are free to defeat the BJP.

The politician, who is also a lawyer, said that the people of Gujarat will give a befitting reply to Arvind Kejriwal’s AAP. The Delhi-based party is trying to make inroads in the BJP-ruled state with a vigorous campaign.

“We call him ‘Chhota Recharge’. We have seen the real face of Kejriwal. He wanted deities on currency notes. His government is involved in corruption. The public will give him a befitting reply,” Pathan said.

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