HYDERABAD — Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen chief Asaduddin Owaisi June 8 said that in order to gain rights in India, Muslims should emerge as political force in the country.
He said he believes this will strengthen the country, the roots of secularism and restore confidence among Muslims.
Addressing a meeting at the historic Mecca Masjid on the last Friday of Ramadan, he said the MIM will continue its political journey to expand in different parts of the country despite allegations from rivals that it is dividing secular votes.
Stating that MIM did not contest elections in Karnataka and extended support to Janta Dal-Secular, Owaisi said the outcome proved their strategy right. He revealed that JD-S leader and now Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy offered MIM a seat but he declined.
The Hyderabad MP said Muslims could no longer trust the Congress. "The Congress is finished. A man who spent 50 years in Congress and was president of India visited RSS headquarters. Do you still have hopes from this party?" he asked referring to Pranab Mukherjee's visit to RSS headquarters June 7.
Owaisi said there was need to look beyond the Congress to find an alternative to the Bharatiya Janata Party.
"The alternate is regional parties and they have to be strengthened," he said, referring to Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhara Rao’s proposal for a federal front as alternative to both the BJP and Congress and to bring qualitative change in the country's politics.
Owaisi slammed Mukherjee for visiting the RSS headquarters and calling RSS founder K.B. Hedgewar a great son of India. He said the man who held the highest constitutional post in the country should know that it was Hedgewar who had asked RSS workers not to fight the British and stated that India is a country of Hindus.
The MIM president also lashed out at Congress for terming Mukherjee's speech at the RSS meet as "sagacious." He reminded Congress that an RSS cadre had celebrated when Mahatma Gandhi was killed by Nathuram Godse.
Owaisi alleged that both BJP and Congress were hoodwinking the people, who were worried about the skyrocketing prices of petroleum products and lack of jobs.
The MIM chief voiced concern over the growing number of attacks on Muslims. He said repression was let loose on the community in the name of the cow since the BJP came to power in the country four years ago. "As many as 28 people were killed in these four years in the name of cow," he said.
Quoting statistics from the Union Home Ministry, Owaisi said communal riots had increased by 24 percent. There were 8,890 incident of communal riots in which 390 people were killed and 9,000 injured.
He alleged that the BJP government created an environment of hatred towards Muslims and was sending the message that Muslims were responsible for Partition and are not loyal to this country.
Owaisi said Prime Minister Narendra Modi greets Muslims on Ramadan and speaks about 'zakat' in his 'Mann ki Baat' program but failed to discharge his responsibilities as a ruler.
The MP said if the excessive crimes against Muslims continued, it will result in the Constitution being thrown to the wind and an end to the rule of law.