By Ahmed Mohiuddin Siddiqui
The national electronic media and a section of the local vernacular media in Hyderabad sought to sensationalize Majlis leader Akbaruddin Owaisi’s election speech and attributed a statement to him about the Majlis-BJP alliance. They seemed to have played into the hands of the national political parties who saw the writing on the wall about thir imminent rout in the elections to the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation.
Akbar Owaisi in his speech warned that he would bury the Congress in Telangana and his brother Asaduddin Owaisi would do the same to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) at the national level. Asad Owaisi has already denied the statement attributed to Akbar Owaisi about the Majlis-BJP alliance. He also lampooned a ‘Congress leader’s hearing problem.’
Speaking to Kohraam News, senior journalist and national secretary of the Indian Journalists Union (IJU), M. A Majid said that a section of the local vernacular media opposed to Owaisi brothers twisted Akbar’s statement and there was no truth about any impending alliance between the two parties – BJP and Majlis. Majid was present at the public meeting when Akbar Owaisi spoke about wiping out both the Congress and the BJP.
The truth is that the national political parties sensing an unprecedented rout at the hands of the Telangana Rashtriya Samithi (TRS) and the Majlis sought to create confusion in the minds of the voters just before the Hyderabad municipal polls. Congress has been giving a free hand to its General Secretary Digvijay Singh to play the Hindutva card, whenever he likes. Digvijay Singh was recently seen sharing a dias with RSS extremist ideologue Indresh Kumar on the issue of Ram Mandir. His relations with the so-called Yogi Adityanath is an open secret. The national media caught Digvijay Singh greeting and bowing to Adityanath in Parliament House recently.
The Majlis party is making inroads into the Muslim-Dalit votebank which traditionally voted for the Congress for more than 50 years. The jittery Congress seems to be playing its cards not too well. Congress has begun to see Majlis as a major adversary in many states. With the Majlis leadership announcing that it will contest the coming polls to the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly, Congress and the BJP see this as a potential loss with slipping away of the Muslim and Dalit votes. The suicide of the Dalit scholar in Hyderbad Central University had a terrible impact on the electoral fortunes of the BJP in Hyderabad municipal polls. The Congress got its worst drubbed ever. Both the Congress and the BJP could not cross the single digits. The TRS sweeped the Hyderabad municipal polls with 99 seats followed by 44 of the Majlis. The Majlis party not only survived the pink party TRS’ mayhem but did extremely well by capturing six new wards from the opposition parties. Asad Owaisi’s social engineering formula is paying dividends as three Other Backward classes Hindu candidates and a Scheduled Tribe candidate won the elections from Majlis. The Samajwadi Party (SP) may be losing sleep over this development. What if this social engineering by Majlis is replicated in UP polls in 2017.
Any further misinformation campaign unleashed by Congress and BJP against Majlis or the Owaisi brothers will boomerang on their political ambitions. The national media will lose its credibility if it runs stories contrary to truth. The main aim of journalism is to inform the public and not sensationalize or distort the truth.
(Ahmed Mohiuddin Siddiqui is a senior journalist, political analyst and columnist).