Hyderabad, January 7: Former Minister & ex-Leader of Opposition in Telangana Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir said that the Congress party has ensured political empowerment of socially and economically backward Muslims in both the Telugu States of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
Shabbir Ali, in a video message released on social media platforms, informed that as many as 43 Muslim corporators were elected in the recently held elections for Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC). He said the number would have been just 13 if the previous Congress Government would not have classified socially and economically backward Muslims under Backward Classes category (BC-E). He said a total of 30 Muslims got elected from the seats reserved for Backward Classes.
He informed that the previous Congress Government, headed by Dr. Y.S. Rajashekhara Reddy, implemented 4% Muslim quota in jobs and education after it came to power in 2004. He said Muslims, falling under BC-E category, were made eligible to contest from seats reserved for BCs in local bodies (urban and local) and also Gram Panchayats. This was implemented for the first time in GHMC elections in 2009. As a result, of 45 Muslim corporators belonging to all parties, a total of 18 were elected from BC reserved seats while 27 were elected from General seats. Similarly, he said of 46 Muslim Corporators elected during GHMC elections held in 2016, a total of 29 were elected from BC Reserved seats and 17 were from General seats. This time too, he said, of 43 Muslim corporators, a total of 30 Muslims were elected from BC reserved seats.
Unfortunately, Shabbir Ali said that Congress did not benefit from its policy of giving Muslim quota. "Of 30 Muslim Corporators elected from BC seats, 27 belong to MIM and three are from TRS. The Congress Govt never implemented policies for political gains. It only aimed at socio-economic and political empowerment of backward, poor and suppressed sections of the society," he said.
"MIM and TRS leaders, who often ask as to what Congress did for the Muslim community, should look at these figures before making such statements. We promised 5% Muslim quota in jobs and education in 2004 Election Manifesto and implemented it in just 58 days after coming to power. We also extended political reservation. Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao had promised in April 2014 that he will implement 12% Muslim quota within four months after coming to power. Even after seven years, the promise remained unfulfilled and not even 12 Muslims were made watchmen under the 12% quota promised by TRS," Shabbir Ali said. (eom)