Debating India

UTTAR PRADESH

PDF to contest 140 seats

Monday 5 June 2006

`May form alliance with like-minded parties’

Lucknow: Undeterred by the voices of dissent emerging from a section of the community and some noted clerics, the newly-formed Muslim outfit Peoples’ Democratic Front on Sunday said it will contest 140 to 145 seats in the coming Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh.

"Although a number of Muslim leaders and ulemas (clerics) have opposed the formation of the Front, it will go ahead with its plan to mobilise the community as a major political force and field its candidates in the forthcoming Assembly elections in U.P.," PDF chairman Kalbe Jawwad said at a conference of various Muslim outfits and ulemas.

PDF, he said, would field its candidates on 140-145 seats and could form an alliance with like-minded parties for rest of the seats.

Saying most of the political parties had so far used Muslims as a vote bank, he said it was high time the Muslim community got united and fought to protect its interest.

Dismissing apprehensions that uniting Muslims as a political party could give rise to communalism, he said the ulemas had always led the society and contributed to social harmony.

He, however, refused comment on the parallel meeting of the PDF to be held in New Delhi, organised by Shahi Imam Ahmed Bhukari of Jama Masjid. The meeting also decided to hold State-level PDF conferences at Kaiserganj, Bahariach on June 20 and Saraimir, Azamgarh on June 22. — PTI & UNI

See online : The Hindu

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