BJP’s Madhavi Latha’s Arrow Backfires, Owaisi Secures Fifth Straight Term

Asaduddin Owaisi

TCN News

Hyderabad: All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi won the Hyderabad parliamentary constituency for the fifth consecutive term, securing 6,61,981 votes. His closest competitor, Madhavi Latha from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), received 3,23,894 votes.

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Hyderabad has been a stronghold of the Owaisi family since 1984 when Sultan Salahuddin Owaisi, Asad’s father, won for six straight terms. Asad has continued this legacy, registering victory since 2004.

As the results of the Lok Sabha elections 2024 are still being announced, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is away from the majority mark of 273 in the 545-member house. However, together with its alliance partner, the incumbents in the form of National Democratic Alliance (NDA) is set to form the government if no defection happens.

Polling in Hyderabad took place on May 13, 2024, during the fourth phase, with a voter turnout slightly over 48%.

Madhavi Latha, a cultural activist and entrepreneur, was the first woman BJP candidate for the seat. Despite addressing Muslim women as her ‘sisters’, she faced backlash for her controversial actions, including shooting imaginary arrows at a mosque during a Ram Navami procession, leading to an FIR for hurting religious sentiments.

On polling day, her demand for burqa (veil)-clad women to unveil themselves further angered many in the community, though she defended her actions.

Other candidates included Mohammad Waliullah Sameer from the Congress and Gaddam Srinivas Yadav from the Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS).

Asad, a 55-year-old barrister who studied at Lincoln’s Inn of London, entered politics in 1994 and has consistently won since then. He is known for his well-researched speeches in Parliament on different issues.

His party, the AIMIM, has contested elections in various states across India with limited success. He keeps entering into alliances with regional parties to represent marginalised sections like Dalits and Adivasis along with Muslims. This strategy has led him to face accusations of being a “BJP agent” or “Team B of BJP”, though he counters it by calling the Congress and the BJP two sides of the same coin.

As Asaduddin Owaisi prepares to take oath for his fifth term as MP, Latha may get nominated to the Rajya Sabha (Parliament’s Upper House).