Mamata Banerjee’s attack on ‘Hyderabad party’ and Owaisi’s sharp retort
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s swipe on Monday at ‘a party from Hyderabad’ drew a quick retort from Asaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM who hit back with ‘fear & frustration’ remarks.
“Extremism is coming out among the minorities, just as there are extremists among the Hindus. There is a political party and they are taking money from the BJP, they are from Hyderabad, not from West Bengal,” the chief minister said at a rally in Cooch Behar in an obvious reference to the All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul-Muslimeen, a Hyderabad-based party. Illegal immigration from Bangladesh is a hot issue in the border district of West Bengal.
Owaisi hit back on Tuesday saying, “By making allegations against me you are giving the message to Muslims of Bengal that Owaisi’s party has become a formidable force in the state. Mamata Banerjee is showcasing her fear and frustration by making such comments.”
Watch | After Mamata’s veiled jibe at AIMIM, Owaisi questions Mamata’s leadership
If Didi is worried about a bunch of us ‘from Hyderabad’ then she should tell us how BJP won 18/42 LS seats from Bengal, Owaisi tweeted on Tuesday.
Assembly elections are due in West Bengal in 2021 and Owaisi has clearly expressed his intention to contest from the state. The AIMIM’s Bengal foray comes at a time when Mamata Banerjee is already under considerable pressure from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is making quick inroads in the state where illegal Bangladeshi migrant issue is turning into a major poll plank.
The AIMIM is slowly working on increasing its footprint on India’s political stage and won two seats in the recently-held assembly elections in Maharashtra, in alliance with the Republican Party of India. The Owaisi’s party also got significant vote share on many seats which analysts believe hurt the Congress-NCP chances.
The party also registered its first electoral victory in Bihar, where party candidate Qamrul Hoda won from Kishanganj in byelection. Enthused by the win, the AIMIM has also set its sights on the Bihar and Jharkhand assembly elections due next year. Reports suggest that the party may contest substantial number of seats in both states.