All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief Asaduddin Owaisi initiated a new critique of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi On Monday (27 November), in response to Gandhi's recent '2 friends' remark directed at the Hyderabad MP.
During a gathering in Telangana on Saturday, Rahul Gandhi stated that Owaisi and the Chief Minister of Telangana, K Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR), were both allies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“Modiji ke hain do yaar, Owaisi aur KCR (PM Modi has two friends- Owaisi and BRS leader K Chandrasekhar Rao)," Gandhi had said.
On the same day, Owaisi retorted to Gandhi's comments, stating, "Rahul Gandhi has two passions in life - one is Italy, due to his mother's origins, and the other is PM Modi, as he provides him with power."
Owaisi sustained his criticism against the ex-Congress MP on Monday. "Rahul Gandhi, now that you're in 50s, loneliness must be bothering. That's your choice. We don't interfere with anyone, but if we are provoked, we don't let it go unanswered," the chief of AIMIM was reported saying by PTI.
Targeting the word yaar used by Gandhi, Owaisi said, "This yaar is coming in your mind again and again because there is something lacking in you, Find someone (partner)."
During election rallies, Rahul Gandhi has been consistently criticising Owaisi, alleging that he is in league with the BJP. He emphasised that in Telangana, the real electoral battle is between the Congress and the BRS, where they have already triumphed over the BJP.
However, he warned that the BJP is rooting for a BRS victory in Telangana, indicating a collaboration between the two. Furthermore, he claimed that the AIMIM is also in collusion with them, during a rally in Mulugu, Telangana last month.
During the assembly elections in 2018, the then TRS, led by KCR, dominated the polls by securing 88 out of 119 seats. Despite forming the Maha Kootami alliance, the Congress, the Telugu Desam Party, the Communist Party of India (CPI), and the Telangana Jana Samithi (TJS) only managed to win a total of 21 seats.
The Bharatiya Janata Party secured victory in one seat, whereas Owaisi's AIMIM triumphed in seven seats.
In 2023, the voting in Telangana is scheduled for a couple of days later on 30 November, with the counting set to occur on 3 December along with four other states.
Nishtha Anushree is Senior Sub-editor at Swarajya. She tweets at @nishthaanushree.
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