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Congress launches poll campaign in MIM’s bastion

The Congress party, on Sunday evening, made a thunderous entry into the Old City of Hyderabad by launching its campaign for GHMC elections from Chandrayangutta, the Assembly segment represented by MIM floor leader Akbaruddin Owaisi.

In a well-calculated move aimed at boosting the morale of Congress cadre and stunning MIM leadership, Greater Hyderabad Congress Committee (Minorities Department) chairman Shaik Abdullah Sohail picked Chandrayangutta to launch the party’s campaign in the Old City. “We wanted to send a strong message to the party cadre. When we can hold campaign in Akbaruddin Owaisi’s constituency, then other areas are just a cake walk,” he said.

TPCC President N. Uttam Kumar Reddy, Leader of Opposition in Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir, TPCC Minorities Department Chairman Mohammed Fakhruddin, GHCC General Secretary Syed Nizamuddin and other top leaders participated in the massive rally and street corner meetings.

“We provided an opportunity to MIM to develop the Old City. But the MIM leaders worked for selfish gains and turned millionaires while neglecting the problems of poor residents. Today MIM has entered into a secret alliance with the BJP and has been trying to damage Congress party in other parts of the country. We erred in understanding the real intentions of MIM leaders. We mistook them for secular after they gave tickets to some Dalit leaders. They not only pursued communal politics, but now they are backing the BJP and other communal forces,” said Uttam Kumar Reddy while addressing a street corner meeting in Bandlaguda.

Shabbir Ali slammed MIM for neglecting development in the Old City of Hyderabad. “MIM won first municipal elections in 1961, entered Assembly in 1962 and it has been winning Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat since 1984. They brought no development during the last 54 years and has been blackmailing the entire community for personal gains,” he said while promising to allocate amounts under his MLC fund to resolve drinking water problem in Barkas area. He said only Congress party has the strength and reach to defeat the communal politics of BJP. “MIM leaders are working at the behest of BJP and this has been exposed by the national media on multiple occasions,” he said.

The Congress leader also questioned as to why  Mohammed bin Omar Al-Yafai alias Mohammed Pahelwan, who was made the prime accused in the case of attack on Akbaruddin Owaisi in April 2011, was not being released on bail. He said Mohammed Pahelwan’s family has been facing injustice and harassment even after losing their son Ibrahim Yafai in the incident. He alleged that MIM leaders have been using their influence to harass Mohammed Pahelwan’s entire family. He said that the countdown for MIM’s downfall has begun. Although the MIM was successful in benefitting BJP-Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, they were rejected by the people of Bengaluru and Bihar, he said.

Shabbir Ali appealed the youth of Old City to join Congress party to strengthen the fight against communalism.

Addressing the street-corner meeting, Abullah Sohail asked Akbaruddin Owaisi to shut down Darulsalaam Bank as it was an interest based institution and interest is forbidden (haraam) in Islam. He reminded that Akbaruddin Owaisi had mentioned in his speech in Mecca Masjid of watching Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) in his dream. He said Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) has declared interest as ‘haraam’ and Akbaruddin Owaisi should close the bank if he really loves the Prophet. He asked the MIM leaders not to misuse the name of Islam for political gains. He said that the time for change has come in the Old City.

Mohamed Fakhruddin criticised MIM for being a mute spectator to the non-implementation of promise of 12% Muslim reservation by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao.

GHCC General Secretary Syed Nizamuddin said that the MIM leaders have failed to utilise Rs. 2,000 crore package for Old City given by the then Congress Government in 2007. He said the then Chief Minister Dr. Y.S.Rajasekhara Reddy and his successors were quite serious towards developing the Old City. But MIM leaders did not allow the government to take up developmental and welfare programmes.

Uttam Kumar Reddy, Shabbir Ali and other leaders welcomed hundreds of MIM workers into the Congress party by offering them khandwas.

Earlier, Uttam Kumar Reddy and Shabbir Ali met Mohammed Pahelwan’s brother Saber Bin Omer Yafai and son Sohail Bin Mohammed Yafai at Omer Function Hall at Chandrayangutta and offered them complete support.

The Congress rally passed through Bandlaguda, Chandrayangutta crossroads, Peeli Dargah, Salala, Barkas, Chandrayangutta, Phool Bagh, Uppuguda and other areas. (INN)