Hyderabad: The All India Majilis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) will contest in three seats in the upcoming Tamil Nadu state elections. The party has joined hands with the TTV Dhinakaran-led AMMK in the south Indian state, which will see the DMK and the ruling AIADMK fight it out.
Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, AIMIM president and Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP Asaduddin Owaisi said that the Dhinakaran, who was earlier with the ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), will provide details of the remaining 200 plus assembly seats.
Dhinakaran is also the nephew of VK Sasikala, who was a close aide of the late Tamil Nadu chief minister and AIADMK supremo Jayalalitha. It was expected that he along with Sasikala would contest and lead the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK), which currently is headed by Dhinakaran.
However, Sasikala stunned everyone by announcing her retirement in the run-up to the elections. She had in fact come out after serving a four-year jail sentence over corruption charges in January this year.
In the upcoming Tamil Nadu polls, the main contest is between the ruling AIADMK and the Dravida Munntera Kazhagam (DMK), led by M K Stalin, who is the son of former chief minister M Karunanidhi. The AIADMK has allied with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), while the DMK hs joined hands with the Congress, Left parties and other regional outfits.
Owaisi keeps mum on West Bengal polls
Owaisi however did not give any information when asked about the West Bengal elections, where the AIMIM’s plans to tie-up with influential cleric Abbas Siddiqui (who has floated the India Secular Front) hit a roadblock. Siddiqui, who heads the Furfura Sharif dargah, has joined the Congress-CPM alliance instead, and left the AIMIM hanging dry.
However, regardless of the setback, the AIMIM is likely to contest the West Bengal polls on its own. Owaisi in typical fashion, has only been responding to questions by reporters on the West Bengal polls with just witty answers. It is to be seen how many seats the party contests in the state, which has a 30% Muslim population.
Last year, the AIMIM stunned everyone by winning five assembly seats in the Bihar state elections. It had joined hands with the Bahujan Samaj Party and former union minister Upendra Kushwaha’s RSLP.