Why Owaisi family rules Hyderabad

The former Razakars have held the Lok Sabha seat of Hyderabad since 1984, projecting Asaduddin Owaisi as the face and voice of Muslims in and around the capital of Telangana

Surajit Dasgupta
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Why Owaisi family rules Hyderabad

Why Owaisi family rules Hyderabad

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The Hyderabad Lok Sabha constituency has been under the control of the All India Majlis-E-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) for the past 40 years. Owaisi has secured victory in this constituency for four consecutive terms starting from 2004. Before him, his father Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi held the Hyderabad seat in the Lok Sabha for six consecutive terms beginning in 1984.

Asaduddin Owaisi, who has been representing Hyderabad in the Lok Sabha since 2004, emerged victorious in the 2019 elections with a huge margin of over 2 lakh 80 thousand votes, getting approximately 64% of the total votes.

The Owaisi family

The Owaisis belong to a family of Razakars, a militia force that fought for the Nizam of Hyderabad to maintain the princely state's independence from India until the Indian Army, under the command of the then-Home Minister, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, defeated the mercenaries. The family’s link with the Razakars can technically be said to be tenuous, of course. Because it was Qasim Razvi, the original leader of the AIMIM, who was a Razakar. He passed on the baton to his protégé Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi, who was Asaduddin’s father.

Political analysts say that the AIMIM continues to win in Hyderabad by positioning itself as the voice of Muslims in 45 Telangana assembly seats, where they make up 8 to 20% of the population.

Why other secular parties can't take AIMIM's place

Other political parties, who rely on these Muslim votes, tend to tread lightly in Hyderabad to maintain a favourable relationship with the AIMIM. Local Congress leaders say in hushed voices that aligning with the AIMIM since the era of undivided Andhra Pradesh has substantially weakened their party's presence in the old city of Hyderabad, demotivating their leaders and members from putting up a robust challenge.

Congress Razakar Vallabhbhai Patel Nizam AIMIM Hyderabad Asaduddin Owaisi Telangana election