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Asaduddin Owaisi's rallies in West Bengal likely to be banned

The AIMIM candidate's victory in Bihar has alarmed the parties banking on Muslim votes

Tuesday December 3, 2019 8:21 AM, ummid.com with inputs from IANS

AIMIM Rallies in West Bengal

Kolkata: In a veiled reference to Asaduddin Owaisi's AIMIM, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Monday asked senior police officials not to allow "any fundamentalist organisations" to hold meetings or rallies in the state.

Mamata Banerjee's diktat came during a meeting at the state secretariat Nabanna, where police officials of the rank of Additional Director General to Deputy Inspector General were present. The Police Superintendents of various districts attended the deliberations through video conference from their own offices.

Sources said the Chief Minister cautioned the police to intensify monitoring of social and digital media, which are being used to spread anti-government propaganda through "fake news" and "half-truths".

Though the Chief Minister did not mention any party, some police officers said her obvious target was Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi's All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM).

Banerjee and other Trinamool leaders had recently lashed out against the AIMIM, again without naming it, calling it "an agent of the BJP" and warning minorities of "extremists among them".

With Banerjee eyeing Muslim votes en bloc in the 2021 assembly polls, the presence of the AIMIM in the state election could heavily jeopardise her objective by dividing the votes from the minority community.

There are reports that Asaduddin Owaisi, who is based in Hyderabad, in an attempt to expand his party's base is planning a series of rallies in West Bengal.

Owaisi's AIMIM has recently won the by-election in Bihar. The AIMIM candidate's victory in Bihar has alarmed the parties banking on Muslim votes.

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