MUMBAI: Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) leader Prakash Ambedkar has stated that Muslims in the state did not vote for the VBA-AIMIM alliance except in Aurangabad.
Ambedkar, who interacted with journalists at Akola, said that the alliance which hoped to bring OBC groups and Muslims together with Dalits to vote against major political parties worked only in Aurangabad where AIMIM’s Imtiyaz Jaleel defeated Shiv Sena veteran Chandrakant Khaire.
However, Ambedkar claimed after the Aurangabad win, VBA is a viable alternative to Congress for state’s Muslim population and if the Congress were to form an Assembly-poll alliance, his party will want equal status.
He also added that at least 10 MLAs of the Sharad Pawar-led Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) are in contact with the VBA “in view of the upcoming assembly elections in Maharashtra”.
As per data, the VBA split votes of Dalits and Muslims in some seats, resulting in the defeat of the Congress and NCP.
Regarding the upcoming assembly elections, he claimed that MNS’s Raj Thackeray’s can emerge as a kingmaker.
“It is unlikely that he would get another chance if he loses this one and hence he should make the most out of the current situation,” Ambedkar said.
The Shiv Sena is likely to contest only 135 out of 288 seats, he elaborated.