AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi at the Times Now Navbharat conclave  |  Photo Credit: Times Now
Lucknow: The All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi, on Wednesday, said that ‘defeating the BJP’ is his party’s primary objective in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh. Speaking at the Times Now Navbharat Navnirman Manch conclave in Lucknow, Owaisi said that political representation is the key to the constitutional rights mentioned by Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar in the Indian Constitution, which, he claimed, justifies the inclusion of the term ‘Muslimeen’ in his party’s name.
“Our primary objective and ambition are to make our candidates victorious in the forthcoming Assembly elections. The second objective is to ensure that the BJP is defeated. References such as kingmaker have no meaning,” he told Times Now’s Sushant Sinha.
While maintaining a silence on the likely alliance in the state, the Hyderabad MP said that the decision will be taken after poll results. On being questioned about the likely AIMIM candidature of jailed underworld don Atiq Ahmad, Owaisi asked why no fingers were pointed towards 37 MLAs, who allegedly have criminal cases against them.
Making repeated references to the withdrawal of 77 cases by the Yogi Adityanath government in the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots, Owaisi questioned – “How many of these are Muslims?”
Reiterating the claims that he has made during his campaigns in Uttar Pradesh, Owaisi said that the state has a 19 per cent population of Muslims who have not been represented by the mainstream parties such as BJP, Samajwadi Party (SP), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and others.
“Every community in Uttar Pradesh has its own voice and its own leaders. But Muslims do not have a representation in Uttar Pradesh,” he added.