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BJP meet to bring Muslims into its fold

In an attempt to bring Muslims into its fold ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, a brain storming session of senior saffron party leaders would be held at Hyderabad.

india Updated: Mar 19, 2008 14:37 IST

In an attempt to bring Muslims into its fold ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, a brain storming session of senior saffron party leaders would be held at Hyderabad next month to chalk out a comprehensive strategy.

"BJP is no longer untouchable for Muslims and they will have no problems under the leadership of L K Advani," senior BJP leader and party's national president of the minority cell Shahnawaz Hussain told PTI here.

He said a three-day meeting of senior leaders of the party would be held at Hyderabad from April three in which a comprehensive strategy would be chalked out to bring the Muslims into the party fold.

Although Hussain remained non-committal when asked whether the saffron party would field more Muslim candidates in the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls, he did say that "religion will not come in the way of winnability".

"All I can say at this moment is that winnability will be the most important factor in the selection of candidates...It won't matter if he is a Muslim," he said when pressed on this count.

Hussain rejected an assertion that Muslims could have difficulties in accepting Advani's leadership.

"BJP has the credit of giving riot-free states barring Gujarat....And there too about 30 per cent Muslims had voted for BJP in the last assembly elections in the state," Hussain claimed.

"Our endeavour will be to remove any misgiving and misconception in the minds of the Muslim community," the former union civil aviation minister said.