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Asaduddin Owaisi

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Asaduddin Owaisi
MP
OwaisiMIM.png
Member of the India Parliament
for Hyderabad
Assumed office
13 May 2014
Preceded by Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi
Majority 2,02,454 (21.14%) (2014)
Member of the India Parliament
for Hyderabad
In office
2009–2014
Member of the India Parliament
for Hyderabad
In office
2004–2009
Member of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly
for Hyderabad
In office
1994–2004
Preceded by Virasat Rasool Khan
Succeeded by Syed Ahmed Pasha Quadri
Personal details
Born (1969-05-13) 13 May 1969 (age 49)[1]
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
(now in Telangana, India)
Political party All India Majlis-e Ittihad al-Muslimin.[1]
Spouse(s) Farheen Owaisi (1996–present)
Relations Akbaruddin Owaisi (brother)
Burhanuddin Owaisi (brother)
Children 6
Mother Najamunnisa
Father Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi
Residence 36–149, Hyderguda, Hyderabad-500 029
34, Ashoka Road, New Delhi-110 001.[1]
Education Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Laws (LONDON)
Barrister-at-Law(Lincoln's Inn)
Alma mater Hyderabad Public School
(Osmania University)
Nizam College
Profession Advocate, politician
Nickname(s) Naqeeb-e-Millat, Qaid, and commonly known as Asad Bhai

Asaduddin Owaisi (born 13 May 1969) is an Indian politician, who is the President of the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen.[2] He is a three-time Member of Parliament (MP), representing the Hyderabad constituency in Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Indian Parliament. He was honoured with Sansad Ratna Award for overall best performance in 15th Lok Sabha in 2014.

Early and personal life

Owaisi was born on 13 May 1969 to Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi and Najmunnisa Begum.[3] He comes from a political family of Hyderabad. His grandfather Abdul Wahed Owaisi relaunched the political party Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen as All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen 18 September 1957. He also succeeded Qasim Razvi as the party president after he was released from prison.[4] His father Sultan Salahuddin was elected to the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly in 1962.[5] He was elected to the Indian Parliament from the Hyderabad constituency for the first time in 1984 and continued winning the elections till 2004, when he stepped down in favour of Asaduddin. He died in 2008.[6] His brother Akbaruddin Owaisi is a Member of Telangana Legislative Assembly and heads the party in it.[7] His youngest brother Burhanuddin Owaisi is the editor of Etemaad.[8] He did his graduation in Bachelor of Arts from Osmania University.[9] He is a barrister by profession and studied at Lincoln's Inn of London.[10]

Owaisi is married to Farheen Owaisi.[11] The couple has six children which includes one son, Sultan uddin Owaisi (born 2010) and five daughters.[12] His eldest daughter was engaged to Barkat Alam Khan ,grandson of Nawab Shah Alam Khan (paternal) and Dr. Moinuddin Khan Sandozai ( maternal side) on 24 March 2018.[13][14] He is hailed by his supporters as Naqeeb-e-Millat (Leader of the Community).[9] He is fluent in Urdu and English. He wears a long sherwani, a Islamic cap and sports a clipped beard.[15]

Political career

Owaisi giving a speech in Makkah Masjid, Hyderabad in 2014

Owaisi belongs to the Hyderabad-based All-India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) party, of which his father and grandfather have been presidents. The party, while opposed to jihadist terrorism, still practises a politics of "competitive chauvinism," according to journalist Kingshuk Nag.[16]

Owaisi made his political debut in 1994 in the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly election. Contesting from the Charminar constituency which his party has been winning since 1967, he defeated his nearest rival a breakaway party Majlis Bachao Tehreek's candidate by a margin of 40 thousand votes. He succeeded Virasat Rasool Khan as the elected representative from the constituency. In the 1999 election, he defeated his nearest rival Telegu Desam Party candidate Syed Shah Noorul Haq Quadri by 93 thousand votes. Owaisi was polled 126 thousand votes in the election. In 2004 election, he was succeeded by Syed Ahmed Pasha Quadri as the member of the Assembly from the constituency.[17][18]

In 2004, Owaisi's father Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi who had been representing the Hyderabad constituency in the Lok Sabha (lower house of Indian parliament) refused to contest further citing poor health. The constituency has 70% Muslim population.[19] He was polled 38% votes compared to his nearest rival Subhas Chanderji's 28%.[20]

In 2008, the Left Front (which consisted of Communist Parties) withdrew their support to the central government of India which was led by the United Progressive Alliance. This was done in response to Indo-US nuclear deal signed by Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and US President George W. Bush which allowed India to keep nuclear bombs but in return had to allow international inspection. The Communist parties felt that by this deal, India would become a pawn of the United States. Due to the Left Front withdrawing support, a vote of confidence was held in Indian Parliament.[21]When Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mulayam Singh Yadav claimed that Muslims of India opposed the deal, Owaisi said that it was an attempt to give a communal angle to the deal. Owaisi announced his support for the United Progressive Alliance in the vote of confidence. He claimed that his top priority was to prevent the opposition right wing Bharatiya Janata Party to ascend to power and to prevent Lal Krishna Advani from becoming the country's Prime Minister.[22] He further stated:

We will express our reservations on the foreign policy impact but at no cost would we like to see the BJP coming in to power, at no cost we would like to see Mr Advani, who is an accused in Babri Masjid demolition case becoming the prime minister of this great nation, thereby destroying the future of Muslims and weakening the secularism.[22]

In the 2009 Indian general election, Zahid Ali Khan, the editor-in-chief of an Urdu daily The Siasat Daily was pitted against Owaisi. He was supported by rival Telegu Desam Party, Telangana Rashtra Samithi, Communist Party of India, Communist Party of India (Marxist).[23] Hindustan Times wrote that the AIMIM party faced "tough challenge" in the Hyderabad constituency.[24] However, Owaisi emerged victorius and defeated Ali Khan by a margin by 110 thousand votes. He increased the winning margin by 10 thousand votes as compared to 2004 election.[25]

Owaisi was awarded the 2014 Sansad Ratna award (Gem of parlamentiarians) October 2013 for his performance in the 15th session of Indian parliament. During this period, he asked 1080 questions in the Parliament compared to the national average of 292. His attendance at 70% was 6% short of the national average. The Milli Gazette wrote that he "has gained wide respect nationally among Indian Muslims for his bold speeches in Lok Sabha (lower house of Indian parliament)". He took up issues in the Parliament which pertained to the interests of the minority community. Also when he raised the issue of waqf properties in the parliament, the then Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh confessed that it was a fault of his ministry in recognising waqf as a serious matter.[26][27][28]

In April 2014, Owaisi filed his nomination for the Hyderabad constituency in the 2014 general election. He declared movable assests worth 2.7 million rupees (around $ 42,000) and immovable assests worth 30 million rupees (around $ 463,000).[29] He was elected from the constituency once again by defeating his nearest rival Bharatiya Janata Party's Bhagvanth Rao by a margin of 197 thousand votes.[30]

Owaisi announced that his party AIMIM would contest the Bihar Legislative Assembly election, 2015 from mainly from the Muslim dominated area of Seemanchal region of the state. News18 India wrote that the party candidates would divide votes and the voters suspected him of being an agent of the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party.[31] He said that he was realistic about their chances of winning. He claimed that the Seemanchal region was underdeveloped and he blamed Bihar's Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Indian National Congress party and Bharatiya Janata Party for it. He said that his aim was to pressurise the government to create a regional developmental council for the region.[32] Although the party contested from six constituencies of Seemanchal region, it failed to win any seat.[33]

Political views

Several commentators liken Owaisi to Jinnah. According to Patrick French, Owaisi appeals to "non-sectarian Muslim identity," though not to the Muslim faith, in a way similar to Jinnah's bid to be the sole spokesman of the Muslim community.[15] His brand of Islamism with nationalism thrives in Hyderabad Old City and Mumbai, the potential areas for radicalisation of Muslim youth.[34]

Owaisi dismisses the comparison with Jinnah citing the fact that his fight is within the framework of the Indian constitution. He says that the secular parties of India have not been able to transfer their votes to Muslim candidates. Of the 23 Muslim MPs elected in 2014, 18 or 19 were from constituencies with 30% Muslim voters. While the parties claim not to discriminate against Muslims, they in practice leave the Muslims in a "ghettoized position." Hence, Muslims must develop their own political force, similar to OBCs, Dalits and Yadavs.[15]

In the aftermath of 2008 Mumbai attacks, Owaisi demanded action against Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi and Hafiz Saeed for killing innocent people. He said that the enemies of the country were enemies of Muslims.[35]

Owaisi supports reservation for backward Muslims in government jobs and education institutes. He also maintains stand that he is against Hindutva ideology but not against Hindus.[36]

Owaisi argues for the abolition of the Haj subsidy given to the Indian Muslims for traveling to Mecca on religious pilgrimage and utilizing the money for the education of Muslim women instead.[37]

In July 2016, Owaisi was praised for his speech for admitting that Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) is a problem among Muslims and called them dogs of hell.[38][39][40] Owaisi said in his speech, which was delivered after 2016 Saudi Arabia bombings to monitor what is being said from some mosques, what and who is injecting radical venom.[41]

In August 2016, Asaduddin Owaisi expressed his displeasure at the Centre for inclusion of the Ahmadiyya community as a sect of Islam in 2011 Census of India, in a series of tweets.[42][43][44][45]

In April 2017, on the issue of ban on cow slaughter, Owaisi criticized BJP for being hypocritical in treating cow as holy in Uttar Pradesh and North Indian states, but un-holy in the Northeast, Goa and Kerala." [46][47][48]

Owaisi said that Muslim men divorcing their wife through instant triple talaq without reasons, must be socially boycotted, but said that the practice still exists.[49]

Controversies

Owaisi has been in controversies and news due to his politics primarily centered around minorities like Muslims and Dalits.[50][51][52]

Owaisi, along with his younger brother Akbaruddin was booked for charges related to manhandling the Medak district collector in 2005.[53][54] On 20 January 2013, he was remanded to judicial custody for 14 days, and later shifted to Sangareddy jail. The case related to an MIM protest against the demolition of a mosque for a road-widening project in Medak district, on 16 April 2005 where police booked him under various charges including criminal intimidation, rioting and promoting enmity between religious groups.[55]

In 2009, a case was registered against Owaisi on the order of Election Commission of India for chasing and beating up Syed Saleemuddin, a polling agent of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) in the Moghalpura area.[56][57] In March 2013, he was detained for organising rally without permission and carrying gun without license in Bidar, Karnataka.[58] In June 2014, Owaisi is said to have delivered hate speech against Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking the Muslim community's support to his party.[59][60]

On 7 February 2016, Owaisi surrendered before Hyderabad police and was later granted bail[61] for an assault by a mob that he allegedly lead, carried out against Telangana Indian National Congress legislators. His close aid Syed Abdahu Kashaf and AIMIM Party social Media head assaulted the congress MLC and leader of opposition Shabbir Ali.[62]

In March 2016, while addressing a public rally in Maharashtra, Owaisi said that he will never say the slogan Bharat Mata Ki Jai (Hail mother India) in response to Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat's comment that the new generation needs to be taught to chant slogans hailing mother India referring to 2016 JNU sedition controversy.[63][64][65] Owaisi said, “Whom is he(Bhagwat) trying to frighten? He can’t force his ideology on others.[66][67] Nowhere in the Constitution it says that one should say: 'Bharat Mata ki Jai' ".[68] Later he clarified that he has no issues with slogan 'Bharat Mata ki Jai', but he has objection with RSS who forces to chant the slogan as test of patriotism [69]

Posts held

# From To Position
01 1994 1999 MLA, Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly
02 1999 2003 MLA, Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly
03 2004 2009 Elected to 14th Lok Sabha
04 2004 2006 Member, Committee on Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme
05 2004 2006 Member, Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment
06 2006 2007 Member, Standing Committee on Defence
07 2009 2014 Elected to 15th Lok Sabha
08 2009 2014 Member, Committee on Defence
09 2009 2014 Member, Committee on Ethics
10 2009 2014 Leader, All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Parliamentary Party
11 2014 current Elected to 16th Lok Sabha [70]

Other work

Owaisi is the Chairman of Hyderabad-based Owaisi Hospital and Research Centre whose origin dates back to late Alhaj Moulana Abdul Wahed Owaisi. The hospital is equipped with sophisticated ultra modern equipment and functions as centre of excellence in the field of Medical Education, Research and Medical care. Research programs at the hospitals are being carried out in collaboration with reputed National and International research Agencies.[71]

Personal life

Owaisi is married to Farheen Owaisi and has five daughters and one son.[15] His mother is Nazima Begum.[72]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c "Lok Sabha profile". Lok Sabha website. 
  2. ^ "India should have at least 60 Muslim MPs: Asaduddin Owaisi". 
  3. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi Biography". Elections. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  4. ^ "Hate speech not new for Owaisi clan". Times of India. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  5. ^ "MIM, the game changer in 2014 elections?". Times of India. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  6. ^ "Asad turns his Maharashtra dreams into a reality". Times of India. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  7. ^ "Owaisi brothers eyeing Muslims beyond Andhra Pradesh for their political gain". India Today. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  8. ^ "Owaisi brothers seek 13 acres from Andhra Pradesh". Times of India. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  9. ^ a b "About Asaduddin Owaisi". My AIMIM. Retrieved 23 September 2017. 
  10. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi taps the pan-India opportunity to consolidate the Muslim vote bank". India Today. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  11. ^ "Detailed Profile: Shri Asaduddin Owaisi". 
  12. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi files nomination papers for Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat". Times of India. Retrieved 18 September 2017. 
  13. ^ "Asad's lavish do outrages social activists, detractors". 
  14. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi Slammed For Hosting Extravagant Engagement Ceremony of Daughter". 
  15. ^ a b c d Patrick French (13 October 2015). "Opportunist or rockstar? Owaisi recasting Muslim politics in India". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 17 March 2016. 
  16. ^ Swami 2010, p. 60.
  17. ^ "Charminar always plumped for MIM candidates". Times of India. Retrieved 21 September 2017. 
  18. ^ "MIM's dream run in Charminar". The Hindu. Retrieved 21 September 2017. 
  19. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi sitting pretty". The Hindu. Retrieved 22 September 2017. 
  20. ^ "30 - HYDERABAD Parliamentary Constituency". Election Commission of India. Retrieved 22 September 2017. 
  21. ^ "India's government survives vote of confidence". The Guardian. Retrieved 23 September 2017. 
  22. ^ a b "AIMIM's MP Owaisi to support UPA". Rediff. Retrieved 23 September 2017. 
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  24. ^ "MIM faces tough challenge in Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 22 September 2017. 
  25. ^ "Record win for Asaduddin". The Hindu. Retrieved 23 September 2017. 
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  27. ^ "Of Hyderabad's 'Sansad Ratna' and his peers". India Together. Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
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  30. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi wins from Hyderabad by a margin of 1,97,000 votes". Ummid. Retrieved 22 September 2017. 
  31. ^ "Bihar elections: Asaduddin Owaisi's AIMIM not a major player in Seemanchal, voters give the party a cold response". News18. Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
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  33. ^ "Bihar election result: Asaduddin Owaisi's right-wing pitch falls flat in Bihar". Retrieved 29 September 2017. 
  34. ^ Tufail Ahmad (9 February 2015). "Jinnah of Modern India". IndianExpress. 
  35. ^ "Embracing Islam will be real home coming: Asaduddin Owaisi". India Today. 4 January 2015. 
  36. ^ "AIMIM chief Owaisi demands quota for backward Muslims in Maharashtra". Indian Express. 2 March 2015. 
  37. ^ "Abolish Haj subsidy, use it for education of Muslims: Owaisi". The Mili Gazette. 5 January 2015. 
  38. ^ "Asaduddin Owaisi denounces IS as 'dogs of hell'". Times of India. 
  39. ^ "ISIS Video Calls Me Agent Of A Hindu Nation". 
  40. ^ "Do not follow 'dogs of hell' IS, Owaisi exhorts Muslim youth". indianexpress.com. 10 July 2016. 
  41. ^ "Owaisi Surprised Many With His Remarks, Zakir Naik Hasn't". 
  42. ^ "Protest against inclusion of Ahmediyyas in Muslim census". 
  43. ^ "Sunnis, Shias, Bohras, Agakhanis and Ahmadiyyas were identified as sects of Islam". 
  44. ^ @asadowaisi (4 Aug 2016). "This inclusion was done during Cong /BJP Question t both party Muslims members what is yr opinion about Prophethood" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 
  45. ^ @asadowaisi (4 Aug 2016). "Ahmadiyyas find place as Islam sect in census Qadiyanis r NOT Muslims accepted Sunnis Shias" (Tweet) – via Twitter. 
  46. ^ Shailaja Neelakantan (Apr 1, 2017). "BJP's 'yummy mummy problem', according to Asaduddin Owaisi". Economic Times. 
  47. ^ Shailaja Neelakantan (Apr 1, 2017). "BJP's 'yummy mummy problem', according to Asaduddin Owaisi". Times of India. 
  48. ^ Ipsita Chakravarty (Mar 30, 2017). "Beef and the BJP: What happens to Hindutva in the states of the North East?". 
  49. ^ Rohit E David (April 12, 2017). "'Muslim man divorcing wife without reason, must be socially boycotted … Triple talaq is not the best way but it happens'". Times of India Interviews Blog. 
  50. ^ "Keen to expand his national footprint, Owaisi says he's not an RSS agent". 
  51. ^ "An Enemy Of Muslims (And Hindus)". 
  52. ^ Mohammad Adeeb (8 January 2013). "Need Gandhi, Not Jinnah". Tehelka. 
  53. ^ MIM President Asaduddin Owaisi Placed in Judicial Custody for 2005 Medak Abuse Case. International Business Times (21 Jan 2013)
  54. ^ "Syed Ahmed Pasha Quadri takes command of MIM". Archived from the original on 23 June 2015. 
  55. ^ MIM President Asaduddin Owaisi Placed in Judicial Custody for 2005 Medak Abuse Case. International Business Times (21 January 2013)
  56. ^ "Poll panel for stern action against Owaisi". IBNLive. Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  57. ^ "Rioting case filed against MIM leader Owaisi". IBNLive. Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  58. ^ "Karnataka: Asaduddin Owaisi detained for organising rally without permission, carrying gun without license". IBNLive. Retrieved 21 November 2014. 
  59. ^ Aswathy Gopala Krishnan (5 June 2014). "Hate speech against Modi: Asaduddin Owaisi's video goes viral". oneindia.in. 
  60. ^ "Will do everything to prevent Narendra Modi from becoming PM: Assaduddin Owaisi". dna. 15 April 2014. 
  61. ^ India (8 February 2016). "Owaisi surrenders in assault case, gets bail". The Indian Express. Retrieved 17 March 2016. 
  62. ^ "Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi surrenders before police". The Times of India. 
  63. ^ Agencies (14 March 2016). "I Won't Say 'Bharat Mata Ki Jai': Asaduddin Owaisi To Mohan Bhagwat". NDTV.com. 
  64. ^ B.V.S. Bhaskar. "BJP leaders burn effigies of Asaduddin Owaisi". The Hindu. 
  65. ^ "Pathan suspension: Why the MIM shouldn't expect much sympathy from the Muslim community". 
  66. ^ "BJP slams Asaduddin Owaisi's 'anti-India' rant". dna. 14 March 2016. 
  67. ^ Firstpost (14 March 2016). "Even with knife to my throat, won't say Bharat Mata ki jai: Asaduddin Owaisi reacts to RSS chief Bhagwat's suggestion - Firstpost". Firstpost. 
  68. ^ "Won't chant 'Bharat Mata ki Jai', Owaisi tells Bhagwat; Shiv Sena says go to Pakistan". 
  69. ^ "'Why are you bracketing me as a Muslim?: Asaduddin Owaisi on why he won't say 'Bharat Mata ki Jai'". scroll.in. 
  70. ^ [1] Archived 20 May 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
  71. ^ "Owaisi Hospital and Research Centre". owaisihospital.com. 
  72. ^ "Mother and wife meet". 
Sources

Further reading

External links

Preceded by
Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi
Member of Parliament from Hyderabad
2004 – present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi
President of All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen
2008–present
Incumbent