Hyderabad, Jan 7: The Congress and Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) are playing politics over Akbaruddin Owaisi's hate speech at a time when Hyderabad is already bruised by the Telangana agitation and bandhs. Brand Hyderabad can ill afford such mind games which are worse than terrorism of bullets and bombs.
MIM legislator Owaisi returned from London on Monday but has refused to appear before the police despite express summons. He is playing a waiting game with the Congress government in Andhra Pradesh. With Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy not willing to risk his neck in arresting Owaisi, the political leadership seems to be hoping a miracle will happen.
The AP Police has never been tough or convincing over the issue of Owaisi brothers. Akbaruddin has been booked in at least six cases by various police stations since 2005. But due to various factors like police inaction and the legal process, he has managed to avoid punishment till date.
The first case against Akbaruddin Owaisi was booked under section 153-a (promoting enmity between classes) r/w 109 IPC at Mahbubnagar II Town police station way back in 1994. A non-bailable warrant was issued against him in 2009 and the trial is still on.
But it is clear that Akbaruddin is trying to acquire as much mileage as possible and he may not surrender and break the promise of his elder brother. Asaduddin Owaisi, an MP, had said his brother would return from London and "surrender before the law" in the case of alleged hate speeches.
Asaduddin had made loft claim that "my brother is not a coward. He will not run away from the law. He is not a law-evading legislator and I am confident that justice is on our side." He had said this at a public meeting on Saturday night in Ranga Reddy district.
But Asaduddin and his brother may never want to have an episode of surrender but rather stage an arrest drama. An arrested Akbaruddin will be a hero and martyr and that is the dividend they are looking to profit from their hate speech.
While this cat and mouse show play out in Hyderabad, people are living in fear of riots and loss of life. A whipped up crowd is difficult to control, especially those elements who are available for hire.
The terrorism of the mind is being played by the Owaisi brothers even though they know that they have broken the law. The elder Asad in fact tried to blame the social media and electronic media for their troubles.
On Saturday night, Asaduddin Owaisi also taunted English TV anchors at a public meeting in Tandur, poking fun at their 'mulk pooch raha hai' (the nation wants to know) rhetoric.
"Television studios have become like courtrooms. Where the anchors ask questions, making it seem like the entire country wants to know the answer. But I will not reply there. I will say what I want before the people," he said.
Asaduddin alleged that Twitter was dominated by the 'saffron brigade'. "Eighty percent of people on Twitter are from the Sangh Parivar," he said. Aggressive twitter handles are influencing much of the news coverage nowadays, Asaduddin claimed and accused the mainstream media of misconstruing the chatter on Twitter as the voice of India.
The police had directed Akbaruddin, who had gone abroad supposedly for treatment, to appear before Nirmal town police in Adilabad district on Monday and at the Nizamabad police station on Tuesday in connection with two cases booked against him for delivering alleged hate speeches last month. Osmania University police in Hyderabad, who registered a case against Akbaruddin on the direction of a city court, have issued notice to the legislator to appear before them on Jan 10.