Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen sees the hand of Congress and BJP behind its present troubles

The Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen wants a debate on ‘hate speeches’ in the country. Right now, it feels, there is a selective targeting of only one community.

Several persons who have hurt the religious sentiments of Muslims are allowed to go scot-free while a slew of cases are booked against the Majlis legislator, Akbaruddin Owaisi. “You can’t have a selective approach. Let there be a definite policy,” is the unanimous argument of several party leaders. They point out how the community sentiments are being hurt systematically. At the recent literary fest at Jaipur, writer Salman Rushdie hurt the Muslims but everyone felt he had a ‘right to offend’. A series of cartoons appeared about the Prophet of Islam but no action was taken. Well-known lawyer, Ram Jathmalani, called Lord Rama a ‘bad husband’ and Union Minister, Jairam Ramesh, said the country needed toilets and not temples. Yet, no cases were booked. But in the case of Mr. Akbaruddin police swung into action immediately. “Is the law to be applied only against Muslims?” asks the MIM president Asaduddin Owaisi.

This view is also shared by a section of the community. Many feel it is wrong to take out portions of Mr. Akbaruddin’s speech and dubbed it ‘hateful’ without seeing it in its entirety.

The Majlis sees the hand of Congress and BJP behind its present troubles. But it feels the BJP will not be able to reap electoral gains from the Akbaruddin episode. At best it could only galvanise its ‘depleted’ cadres in the city.

“Why are there no protests in Rayalaseema and Andhra if it is a question of hurting the religious sentiments? This only shows that the BJP is raking up the issue only to polarise votes in Telangana where it stands to gain from bifurcation of the State” argues the MIM chief.

The Majlis, which has consistently maintained that the BJP will emerge stronger in the event of creation of Telangana, feels its fears have been confirmed by the present controversy. “Even before the State is bifurcated the BJP is targeting Muslims and what it would do can well be imagined,” says a senior leader.

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