AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi takes oath as a member of the House during the first session of the 18th Lok Sabha, in New Delhi, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. - He hailed Palestine after his oath.
AIMIM MP Asaduddin Owaisi takes oath as a member of the House during the first session of the 18th Lok Sabha, in New Delhi, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. - He hailed Palestine after his oath.PTI

AIMIM's troubled past resurfaces as Owaisi faces disqualification over remarks

You can take the Owaisi out of Razakars, but you cannot take the Razakar out of Owaisi. Hailing a region that harbours terrorists in the House is enough to disqualify Asaduddin.

The polemic of politics is a slippery slope. Asaduddin Owaisi, the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) MP from Hyderabad just made a banana peel gaffe. Owaisi’s postscript panegyric “Jai Palestine!” after his oath taking is nothing short of support for Hamas, a terrorist organisation comprising Gaza civilians and UN officials who were involved in the October 7 rape, murder and infanticide of 1,139 Israelis; and the kidnapping of about 250 hostages. Hence does Owaisi’s endorsement indicate AIMIM supports mass murder?

Since its beginning on November 12, 1927, AIMIM which started life as MIM has been an anti-India outfit. Its ideology was Ashraf dominion and opposition of Muslim-majority Hyderabad’s accession to India; Ashraf dominion calls for the rule of high caste Muslim nobility, considered the true descendants of Prophet Muhammad. MIM’s storm troopers were Razakars, an armed paramilitary organisation notorious for pogroms against Hindus in cold blood, rape and looting.

Their slogan was: ‘Bamman ko looto, Baniye ko kaato, Aapas mein sab baato’ (Loot the Brahmin, kill the trader, and share in the pillage). Nehru and Patel sent in the Army and forcibly merged Hyderabad with India. Subsequently Asaduddin’s great grandfather Abdul Wahed Owaisi changed the party’s name to AIMIM and his descendant Asaduddin has tried to launder its bloody past by denying any connection with Razakars.

India’s most prominent Muslim dynastic party has a record of making murderous threats; hence its backing of Palestine is understandable. In 2012, Owaisi’s deputy and brother Akbaruddin warned that 25 crore Muslims will need only 15 minutes to show 100 crore Hindus who are more powerful, if the police stay out of it. You can take the Owaisi out of Razakars, but you cannot take the Razakar out of Owaisi. Hailing a region that harbours terrorists in the House is enough to disqualify Asaduddin.

Disqualification is a tricky affair, though made easy in Modi 2.0. The Constitution guarantees freedom of speech: Owaisi’s argument is if BJP MPs can say ‘Jai Sri Ram!’ why can’t he say ‘Jai Palestine?” But the rhetorical equivalent of ‘Jai Sri Ram’ would be ‘Allahu Akbar’, not fealty to another country. One provision for disqualifying an MP is “acknowledgment of allegiance or adherence to a Foreign state”. The matter is referred to the President of India who sends it to the Election Commission. Owaisi is in trouble and the Opposition will be undecided on supporting him.

The West is overwhelmed by Islamist migrants, mainly Muslim, West Asian and African who call for sharia in their host nations. It is also engulfed by violent anti-Semitism from Muslim migrants and Black Americans, but not Nazis this time. Public attacks on synagogues and Jews are rampant, and the police stand by watching.

A British policeman was seen on video arresting a Jewish Londoner for waving an Israeli flag at a mammoth Palestinian protest, not the protestors who were yelling for Israel’s elimination; the London police reports to Mayor Sadiq Khan. The BJP may have lost the election, but still holds the fort. Under Modi, not a single pro-Palestine rally has been allowed in India. The Opposition laments that Modi is an enemy of civil liberties. One fact is clear: he is there to protect the liberties of Indian citizens from any cultural or religious invasion. It is how history will judge him.

Ravi Shankar

ravi@newindianexpress.com

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