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Business News/ Politics / Policy/  MIM withdraws support to UPA, AP government

Hyderabad: The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) on Monday said it was withdrawing support to the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre and the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh after the arrest of its lawmakers in the state.

AIMIM’s seven members of the legislative assembly (MLAs) in Andhra Pradesh were arrested in Hyderabad on Sunday over a row concerning expansion work on a temple adjoining the historic Charminar. The legislators were taken into preventive custody when they tried taking out a march to the Charminar.

Police have banned assembly of five or more people as part of the prohibitory orders in some parts of the city ahead of the Diwali festival on Tuesday due to concerns of communal tension.

“We are compelled to take this step because of the communal behaviour of (chief minister) Kiran Kumar (Reddy) government because it is no longer a secular government. We tried to correct them but they are not listening," Asaduddin Owaisi, AIMIM president said.

Owaisi said the party has faxed a letter of withdrawal of support to UPA to the president’s office, and will be meeting the state governor shortly.

Besides the seven MLAs, the party has one member of Parliament, having won the Hyderabad Lok Sabha parliamentary seat without a break since 1984.

The AIMIM has aligned with the Congress since 1998, when the then-ruling Telugu Desam Party allied with the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance.

The Congress party said AIMIM’s withdrawal of support would not threaten its stability. The Congress party has 155 MLAs in the house of 294.

“We are examining the issue. Everything will fall in place. We will talk to them. It’s a small issue but sensitive. We will resolve it," Congress party’s state unit chief Botsa Satyanarayana said on television.

G. Haragopal, political science professor at the University of Hyderabad, said there was no immediate threat to the stability of the state government.

“None of the political parties (in the state) is ready for elections," Haragopal said. “My reading is they (opposition parties) will allow the Congress party to commit some more errors… and then at the right time they may hit," he said.

Owaisi described jailed Congress rebel and YSR Congress party chief Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy as a friend, when asked if the party will consider aligning with him. “Jagan Mohan Reddy is my friend. Kiran Kumar Reddy was my friend," Owaisi said to loud cheers at the party’s headquarters. “What will happen I cannot say. If elections come, yes we have to take a call on it…"

Businessman-politician Jagan Mohan Reddy, son of late former chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, is currently lodged in the Chanchalguda prison in Hyderabad on charges that he used his influence to dole out favours to private firms in return for investments into his business empire, which includes the Telugu-language Sakshi television channel and a newspaper of the same name. Owaisi had on previous occasions met Jagan Mohan Reddy in jail.

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Updated: 12 Nov 2012, 11:59 PM IST
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