Hyderabad, Jan 7: Akbaruddin Owaisi returned home from London today amid the row over his “hate speech” and swiftly sought four days time from the police to appear before it even as the BJP mounted a fresh offensive against Andhra Pradesh government accusing it of going soft on the MIM MLA.
Owaisi, who was asked to appear before Nirmal police today, landed in the city from London, where he was undergoing treatment for an undisclosed disease, and promptly petitioned the police to grant him four days time.
The police, according to a senior officer, is yet to take a call on whether to allow his plea. Opposition BJP, which has been demanding strict action against Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen floor leader in the state assembly, attacked the Congress government for going “soft” on him, owing to political reasons.
“Why this delay in taking action. Why this lenient attitude when there is a universal condemnation of his (MIM MLA's) highly objectionable comments. It is the Congress which helped MIM to grow. They still share power in Hyderabad Corporation. Is this the reason why they are soft?,” senior BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu said addressing reporters.
MIM had recently withdrawn support to Congress both at the Centre and in Andhra Pradesh but both parties continue to share power in the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC).
The Congress government has failed to take action against the MIM leaders promptly though they violated the law on many occasions in the past, Naidu alleged and said, “Congress will have to answer for its inaction.”
“Every word said by him (Owaisi) at public meetings in Adilabad and Nizamabad districts was highly provocative and objectionable,” Naidu said, adding the Congress government lacked courage to act against the MIM leader.
Naidu said Owaisi's “inflammatory” speech was aimed at strengthening the party elsewhere in AP and also in some parts of erstwhile Nizam state.
Notices were issued to Owaisi on January 4 directing him to appear before investigating officers of Nirmal (Rural) police in Adilabad district today and before the Nizambad II Town police tomorrow. Another notice was served on Owaisi by the Osmania University Police directing him to appear before them on January 10.
Two FIRs were registered suo moto in Adilabad and Nizamabad districts, while a third case was filed against the MLA by Osmania University Police following a court directive after he allegedly used “inflammatory and derogatory” language against a particular community at public functions last month.
Owaisi has been booked under IPC sections 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, language etc. and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony) and 295A (deliberate and malicious acts intended to outrage religious feelings of any class by insulting its religion or religious beliefs). He has also been booked under IPC section 121 (waging or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the Government of India).