Abbas Ansari, 25, is stepping into politics after a successful stint in sports. A three-time national champion in air rifle shooting and a management graduate, he has represented India in international events.
The son of incarcerated Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) legislator Mukhtar Ansari, Abbas believes a sportsperson can be a good politician if his intention is to serve.
“I am in politics to serve the needy, oppressed masses and fight the forces dividing the nation on the grounds of caste and religion. Unlike others, I am not starved of name or money,” said the BSP candidate from Bhosi that goes to polls in the sixth phase of the UP elections.
With nearly 30% Muslim voters coupled with the strong backing of traditional BSP votes, Abbas is confident of his victory.
He credits his shooting and political acumen to his family, steering the conversation towards his father who is in jail for the past 11 years in connection with several criminal cases pending against him.
Abbas may have joined the elite club of political scions but unlike others of his genre, he carries the weight of being a tainted politician’s son. However, the young politician, who idolises his father, is unfazed.
“My father’s popularity sells in UP. People from all castes and religions adore him. SP patriarch Mulayam Singh had once announced on a public platform that Mukhtar Ansari’s name alone can influence at least 5,000 votes in every constituency of UP. He is suffering due to his popularity,” Abbas said.
Predicting a BSP government in the state, he said, “Inshallah, I am going to win. Ten years down the line, my younger brother will also contest the polls and win.”