Although still very low, representation of Muslim Parliamentarians in 17th Lok Sabha may go up slightly over the last term. At last count, 25 MPs are likely to be elected, against 23 in the outgoing Lok Sabha.
Muslim representation in the Lower House comes to less than 5 per cent of its total composition, way below the community’s 14-per cent share in total population.
The BJP, leading in 303 of 542 seats, is again the only winning party in general elections to not have a single Muslim MP. The party had given tickets to two Muslim candidates in West Bengal, where the community accounts for about 27 per cent of the state’s population; one in Lakshadweep, which has over 95 per cent Muslim population; and three in Muslim-majority Kashmir Valley. None of the six candidates have won or are in the lead.
In Uttar Pradesh, the BSP and Samajwadi Party alliance will have three Muslim MPs each in the House: BSP’s Kunwar Danish Ali (Amroha), Afzal Ansari (Ghazipur), Haji Fazlur Rehman (Saharanpur), and the SP’s S T Hassan (Moradabad), Shafique Rehman Barq (Sambhal), and Azam Khan (Rampur).
The next highest number is likely to come from West Bengal, with five of six of them from TMC, and one from the Congress.
AIMIM, which has Asaduddin Owaisi elected again from Hyderabad, is likely to see another member in the new Lok Sabha. The party’s Imtiaz Jaleel Syed, contesting from Aurangabad in Maharashtra, was leading by a thin margin over sitting MP Chandrakant Khaire of the Shiv Sena late Thursday night. The AIMIM contested in Maharashtra in alliance with Prakash Ambedkar’s Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi, leading to consolidation of Muslim and Dalit votes in some seats for the alliance.
The Left Front’s only win from Kerala is likely to come from Alappuzha, where CPI(M)’s A M Ariff was leading by just over 10,000 votes late night. Also in Kerala, the Indian Union Muslim League’s E T Mohammed Basheer (Ponnani) and P K Kunhalikutty (Malappuram) have been elected, while the party’s K Navaskani is leading from Ramanathapuram in Tamil Nadu, where IUML is part of the DMK-led alliance.
All three Lok Sabha seats in Kashmir Valley went to the National Conference, its candidates being Farooq Abdullah, Mohammad Akbar Lone, and Hanani Masoodi.
The Congress has four Muslim candidates who are leading: Abdul Khaleque (Barpeta, Assam), Mohammad Jawed (Kishanganj, Bihar), Abu Hasem Khan Chowdhury (Maldah Dakshin, West Bengal), and Mohammad Sadique (Faridkot, Punjab).