SP Leader Shivpal Wants Owaisi to Join Fight Against BJP

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The move is being seen as a sign of thaw between the Samajwadi Party and the AIMIM which have been at loggerheads.

LUCKNOW — Samajwadi Party leader Shivpal Yadav has reached out to All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi and asked him to join hands against the BJP.

The move is being seen as a sign of thaw between the Samajwadi Party and the AIMIM which have been at loggerheads.

“Owaisi sahab is a very good man but when will he join hands with the SP against the BJP?” asked Shivpal.

Shivpal’s offer came in response to a query on a recent tweet by Owaisi where he questioned Akhilesh’s statement about safeguarding “real Hindutva” and his commitment towards the welfare of the Muslims who had voted “en masse” for SP in 2022 UP polls.

Acrimony between SP and AIMIM had peaked in the run-up to 2017 elections when Owaisi was denied permission by the then Akhilesh government to hold rallies in UP on 17 occasions in Muslim-dominated districts like Azamgarh, Meerut, Ghaziabad, Rampur and Bahraich.

Owaisi had then threatened to take to the streets in Lucknow if he was not allowed to address a public meeting in the state capital.

Finally, Owaisi decided to hold meetings at district offices of AIMIM.

Since then, Owaisi has been highly critical of Akhilesh and accuses SP of using Muslims as a mere vote-bank.
Even in the 2022 Assembly polls, Owaisi targeted the SP more than the BJP.

SP had hit back by calling AIMIM as the ‘B’ team of BJP. The barbs between the two parties slowly vanished after SP failed to win 2022 elections and AIMIM could not win even a single seat in the polls.

This is not the first occasion when Shivpal described Owaisi as a competent politician. A few days ago, he had acknowledged Owaisi as a qualified leader with a big following.

Owaisi too, had described Shivpal as the leader who had risen from the grassroots and understands politics better than many in SP.

The two leaders had several meetings when Shivpal had parted ways with the Samajwadi Party and was looking towards a new political formation, last year.

Incidentally, AIMIM has not been included in the new political formation INDIA, led by opposition parties. — IANS

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