Log in
Headlines →
Ronaldo, Messi, Neuer shortlisted for FIFA's world player of the
Break-up rumours baseless, Dev and I are soulmates: Freida Pinto
90-year-old woman raped in Madhya Pradesh
Delhi church gutted, foul play suspected
36 feared dead in Kenya attack: Red Cross
2nd phase: Moderate polling in J-K, Jharkhand
RBI governor Raghuram Rajan keeps key rates unchanged; EMIs won't
LPG price cut by Rs 113, jet fuel price dropped

Owaisi threatens to sue Lalu, accuses Pawar of practising soft Hindutva

  • Written by Dimpitha
New Delhi: Asaduddin Owaisi, chief of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen or MIM, on Thursday threatened to file a defamation suit against Lalu Prasad over the Rashtriya Janata Dal supremo's allegation that Owaisi was paid by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh to contest elections in Maharashtra.

"Lalu Prasad Yadav needs to withdraw the baseless charges he made against me of receiving money from RSS or else, I will file a criminal defamation case against him," Owaisi told Headlines Today in an exclusive interview. "I campaigned for him in 2006 elections," he said.

The three-time Member of Parliament from Hyderabad also accused Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar of practising soft Hindutva. "He has no locus standi. He unilaterally offered support to the Shiv Sena. He practises soft Hindutva," the 46-year-old leader said. "Pawar offered support (to the BJP government in Maharashtra) to ward off inquiry into the irrigation scam," he said.

On being asked if he considers himself the leader of India's Muslims, Owaisi said, "I'm not a leader of Muslims. I never want to be a Muslim leader." His party, the MIM, won two seats and came second in as many constituencies in the recent Maharashtra elections, his party's first major victory outside its bastion in Hyderabad, which it has been representing in Parliament for the last three decades.

"I want to increase Muslim representation, hence the decision to contest elsewhere as well," Owaisi said. The MIM has already announced plans to contest a few seats in poll-bound Jammu and Kashmir and Jharkhand. "As far as Delhi is concerned, we haven't decided. We are strengthening ourselves. In West Bengal, we are organising our branches there," he said. Delhi is likely to vote in February next year.

When asked about the allegations of him heading a communal party, Owaisi replied, "Muslims today are caught between the devil and the deep sea. Why should I go to such parties to take a certificate of secularism and nationalism?"

"The burden of secularism must be shared. It's not my responsibility alone. I am not a coolie of secularism. Are you saying we are only good enough to hold Iftar parties and send chadars to Ajmer while they sit in power and forget about us?" he said.

Accusing the anti-BJP parties of practising token secularism, Owaisi asked, "What did 60 Muslim MLAs in Uttar Pradesh do when Muzaffarnagar was happening? All this is because there is no true representation." Nearly 60 Muslims were killed in communal riots in Muzaffarnagar last year for which the ruling Samajwadi Party had received a lot of flak.

"How is it that BJP contests and wins 71 Lok Sabha seats in UP. The SP, which claims to be a party for Muslims, won just five seats - all of them by the Yadavs. Why couldn't the SP get a Muslim candidate to win?" he said. When asked why he ditched the Congress, with which it was in alliance at the Centre, Owaisi said, "I left UPA in 2012 and never asked for any post from them. How can anyone say I ditched them?"

"60 lakh Muslims voted in Maharashtra while we only got five lakh votes. 90 per cent of the Muslim vote went to them (Congress). Their misgovernance and their soft Hindutva cost them the government," the MIM chief said.

When asked about the alleged hate speeches delivered by his brother, Akbaruddin Owaisi, the MIM chief said the courts will decide if they were against the law. "Apply rule of law equally on all those who infringe upon the law. My brother's speech and conduct are being looked into by the courts. Let them decide."

Related items

More in this category: « Hisar court sends Rampal to five-day police custody Shahi Imam has no right to pick son as successor: Delhi High Court »

Leave a comment



Partly Cloudy

Humidity: 74%

Wind: 0 km/h

  • 2 Dec 2014 33°C 22°C
  • 3 Dec 2014 33°C 21°C
Banner 468 x 60 px