Contrary to their popular claim of Muslim uplift and seemingly
working on a policy to deny fare Muslim representations in the
parliament and legislative assemblies, the Congress-NCP alliance in
Maharashtra gave party tickets to only 14 Muslim candidates when
they unleashed the first list of the candidates yesterday.
Out of these 14, 12 Muslims are in the
first list of 159 Congress candidates whereas NCP has given the
party tickets to two Muslims in its list of 80 candidates.
The Congress party has an alliance
with Sharad Pawar led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) for the
ensuing assembly elections in Maharashtra.
total 288 assembly seats that will go to polls on October 13 this
year, Congress will be contesting on 174 seats whereas NCP would be
fielding 114 candidates on its party tickets.
Muslims in Maharashtra are already
disgruntled against the ruling Congress-NCP alliance due to its lackluster
attitude towards the community in the past ten years. The
mishandling of the 2008 Malegaon blast case that made the headlines
few months before the polls had only intensified their anger.
However, at the time when the
community was expecting from the ruling alliance to compensate for the poor representation given to
the Muslims in 2009 Parliamentary elections, the alliance ditched the community once again when it
included only 14 Muslims in its first list.
On the basis of the Muslim population
in Maharashtra, community leaders were demanding alliance tickets
for 35 Muslim candidates. Congress High command too had promised
during the Lok Sabha elections that it would field enough number of
Muslim candidates in the assembly elections.
“During the 2009 parliamentary
elections in a meeting at Islam Gymkhana in Mumbai the Congress had
promised a fare Muslim representation in the assembly elections”,
said Fareed Khan of Qaumi Majlis-e-Shura.
The Congress-led UPA had received
overwhelming support from the Muslim community during the 2009
parliamentary elections. However, in Maharashtra it had fielded just
two Muslim candidates - both of them lost the elections. As of
now there is no Muslim MP from Maharashtra.
“Even Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on
his visit to Mumbai during the parliamentary elections had admitted
that appropriate number of Muslim candidates was not given tickets.
He had promised to compensate it in assembly elections”, said Fareed
“However, the ongoing development
reveals that the alliance is not serious about its promise and it is
again taking the community for granted”, he added.
As a reminder to the alliance
leadership, Fareed Khan had even written a letter to
Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and NCP Supremo Sharad Pawar demanding 35 Muslim
candidates in the ensuing assembly elections in Maharashtra.
The 12 Muslim candidates who find the
place in the first list of the Congress candidates include Baba
Siddiquee, Dr. Sayyad Ahmed, Amin Patel and Mohd Aslam from Mumbai,
Javed Dalvi from Bhiwandi, Shaikh Rasheed from Malegaon, Saleem
Patel from Jalgaon, Anees Ahmed from Nagpur, Razia Baigum from
Balapur, Anwar Bapu Deshmukh from Pator and Abdus Sattar from Sillod.
Babajani Durrani is one of the two
candidates that the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has included in
its first list of 80 candidates.