The All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) headed by MP Asaduddin Owaisi will not field candidates for the Karnataka Assembly polls scheduled for May 12, and will back candidates of the Janata Dal Secular led by former PM H D Devegowda.
“MIM party has decided to support JDS party in Karnataka assembly elections… MIM will not be fielding any candidates I will address public meetings support of of JDS if there is need,’’ Owaisi said in a message on Twitter on Monday.
The MIM leader has suggested that the support for the JDS is in line with efforts to bring to power a non-Congress and non-BJP government in Karnataka.
The JDS has traditionally received the support of the Muslim community, but has recently lost ground after several of its top leaders shifted to the Congress. The association with the MIM is expected to help JDS retain some of its support base in the community.
“If Muslim parties like SDPI, AIMIM and MEP puts up candidates and if significant percentage of Muslim vote slips away from Congress to these parties, then BJP stands to gain,’’ pollster Premchand Pallety said in a recent analysis of the electoral situation in Karnataka.