AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi on Monday denied receiving a letter from the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) about Uttar Pradesh elections and said that the Board has nothing to do with politics.
The Hyderabad MP told reporters that AIMPLB has not written a letter to him. He said the Board's Constitution is clear that it does not involve itself in politics.
"The Board has nothing to do with politics and it is not their position," said Owaisi, who is also a member of the apex body of Indian Muslims.
AIMPLB working committee member Moulana Sajjad Naomani had last week written a letter to Owaisi, urging him to minimise the division of votes against communal forces in the Uttar Pradesh elections.
The eminent cleric urged the AIMIM leader to field candidates only in those constituencies where winning is certain.
Owaisi, however, did not react to the letter by Sajjad Naomani.
To another query, Owaisi said he will have to face throughout his life the allegation of dividing the so-called secular votes. "I want to ask those who are making this allegation. Why BJP won in Uttar Pradesh in 2014, 2017 and 2019. The truth is the so-called secular parties failed to defeat the BJP. In 2019, MIM contested only three Lok Sabha seats, how BJP won 306 seats," he said.
"They are frustrated. They have no ideological and intellectual strength to defeat BJP and that is why they are blaming MIM," he added.
Owaisi said that his party is geared up to contest the UP elections as per the plans of its state unit to contest 100 seats. The party on Sunday released its first list of nine candidates. He said there would be more lists for the second phase and subsequent phases.
"Only time will tell. As of now we are completely geared up and prepared to contest the polls," Owaisi said when asked about the possibility of alliance with other parties.
The Lok Sabha member said AIMIM was preparing to contest the polls following Covid guidelines issued by the Election Commission of India. "Since meetings are not allowed, we will organise virtual meetings. We will use modern technology tools as per the Election Commission guidelines. We will increase social and digital media presence," he said.
The AIMIM chief hoped that the 60 meetings he addressed in UP during the last 4-5 months will have an impact and help the party.
To a query about the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) asking the Uttar Pradesh government to probe Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband's website for allegedly publishing "unlawful and misleading" fatwas, Owaisi said NCPCR should know that fatwa is mere legal opinion and it does not have any legal significance.
"Fatwa is an opinion given by the Ulema or religious scholars. Despite knowing this, if they (NCPCR) are indulging in this behaviour, they may have vested interests in this," he added.
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