HYDERABAD: The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) on Tuesday announced the first list of candidates for the ensuing Telangana Assembly elections, retaining all seven sitting legislators in Hyderabad, its stronghold.
Party President Asaduddin Owaisi has, however, swapped the constituencies of two legislators.
Mumtaz Ahmed Khan, who had been representing Yakutpura constituency since 1999 on MIM ticket, will this time contest from Charminar, considered the pocket borough of Owaisi family.
Senior MIM leader Ahmed Pasha Quadri, who was elected from Charminar consecutively for three terms since 2004, has been fielded from Yakutpura.
Asaduddin Owaisi's younger brother Akbaruddin Owaisi will seek re-election from Chandrayangutta for the fifth consecutive term.
The other MIM candidates who will seek re-election are Mohd Moazam Khan (Bahadurpura), Ahmed Bin Abdullah Balala (Malakpet), Jaffer Hussain Meraj (Nampally) and Kausar Mohiuddin (Karwan).
Asaduddin and Akbaruddin's father Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi had represented Charminar constituency since it was created in 1967. Salahuddin Owaisi held this seat till 1984 when he won the Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat for the first time and represented it for six consecutive terms.
Asaduddin Owaisi made his debut in politics by winning Charminar seat in 1994, held it till 2004 when he contested from the Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat for the first time after his father retired from politics on health grounds.
Asaduddin has since been representing the Lok Sabha constituency.
Following delimitation of Assembly constituencies in 2009, the MIM had improved its tally to seven from five in the previous election.
MIM became the second party after ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) to announce candidates after the dissolution of the Assembly by Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao.
MIM, a friendly party of TRS, may not contest any other seat in 119-member Assembly.
The TRS chief, who has announced candidates for 105 constituencies, has already said that his party may have friendly contest with MIM in the latter's stronghold.