KOLKATA: The West Bengal Imam Association said on Wednesday that it will hit the streets against AIMIM’s decision to participate in the upcoming Assembly elections with Islamic cleric Abbas Siddiqui.
The imam’s body alleged that the AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi is venturing into Bengal’s electoral arena with a goal to ensure dividend in favour of the BJP in the next year’s elections.
The imam’s organisation also said it would form a new organisation and contest the upcoming elections to resist AIMIM and Abbas, if necessary. The ruling Trinamool Congress enjoys the support of the state’s Muslim community, which forms more than 30 per cent of the total electorates. The community switched to the TMC’s fold in 2011 Assembly elections decimating the Left Front.
On January 3, Owaisi visited Furfura Sharif and met Siddiqui, signaling AIMIM’s entry in the fray in 2021, when Assembly elections are due in the state. The entry of AIMIM and alliance with Abbas is said to be aimed to chip away at the minority vote share of the TMC. Both the TMC and the CPI(M) described Owaisi as BJP’s proxy. After an impressive show in last year’s Bihar elections, the AIMIM is now eyeing the upcoming Bengal polls. The party is keen to leave its footprint on West Bengal, sources said.