Akhtar-ul Iman who has become the face of Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) in Bihar is contesting from Amour seat in the Seemanchal region in the state.
AIMIM Bihar chief Akhtarul Iman is known in political circles as Owaisi of Bihar.
The firebrand speaker and potential politician of Seemanchal, Iman entered politics when he was a student.
Two time RJD MLA, JD(U) leader
In the Bihar assembly election of 2005, Iman contested from Kochadhaman on an RJD ticket and was elected. Iman also retained the seat in 2010.
In 2014, Iman left RJD and joined JD(U). He was made a candidate by his party to contest from the Kishanganj seat for the 2014 General Elections and 10 days before the polls, he withdrew in favour of Mohammad Asrarul Haque of the Congress citing that he did not want to split the Muslim vote as his goal was to defeat BJP. His decision eventually paved the way for an easy victory by Qasmi.
In August 2015, Iman joined AIMIM.
“It (JD(U) and RJD) takes the votes of Muslims by showing anger on BJP or Hindutva parties but has always backstabbed Muslims when it comes to development or political sharing. So, this is the reason, I feel that there should be the community’s own representation to fight for the community,” Iman said in an interview with Maktoob in 2019 April.
In November 2015 Bihar assembly election, he was mas made a candidate for the AIMIM from the Kochadhaman seat where he won in 2005 and 2010. However, he lost the election to Mujahid Alam of JD(U). Iman polled 37,000 votes compared to Alam’s 56,000.
At AIMIM rallies, party workers hailed Iman as ‘Sher-e-Bihar’
In the 2019 General Elections, Iman was the AIMIM’s candidate for the Kishanganj Lok Sabha constituency, which has a Muslim population of 56%. He had come in third, with 2,94,859 votes.
Iman had been part of the campaign that led to the AIMIM’s debut into the Bihar House in 2019. AIMIM has opened their account in Bihar by winning Kishanganj assembly seat in the bypolls. AIMIM’s Qamrul Hoda defeated nearest BJP candidate by more than 10000 votes.
Development of Seemanchal
Asaduddin Owaisi’s AIMIM placed its candidates mainly in Muslim dominated areas of Bihar, mainly Kishanganj, Purnia, Araria, and Katihar districts. There are around 45 minority-dominated Assembly seats in these districts of the Seemanchal region from where RJD and Congress candidates had been winning till the 2014 General Elections and 2015 Assembly polls.
In the Seemanchal region, Muslims account for nearly 67 percent in Kishanganj, 37 percentage in Purnia, 43 percentage in Katihar, and nearly 40 percentage in Araria.
Being born as a native of Kishanganj district, the 55-year-old Iman has plans and programs for the growth of the Seemanchal region.
In Iman’s words: “The leaders who sit in Patna or Delhi have no proper planning for the region because it has a major population of Muslims and the rest of the population constitutes Dalits. Even considering the growth of this region has always been the last slot. No ray of hope has reached the region even after seven decades of independence. The region is only known for assets like unemployment, poverty, illness, illiteracy, homelessness, and so on.”
He was a part of the campaign that led to the setting up of a study centre of Aligarh Muslim University in Kishanganj district.
“This is the most backward region in a most backward state, in an interview with Maktoob, Educationalist in Seemanchal and AIMIM leader Tafheem Rahman said.
“In terms of education, development and per capita income, we are far behind comparing to other regions in Bihar,” Rahman said.
Rahman said that the people of Seemanchal have failed to choose the right representation in the House.
Watch full interview:
Amour is an assembly constituency in Purnia district.
The Grand Alliance has fielded Abdul Jalil Mastan, the current MLA in Amour on a RJD ticket. Six time MLA Mastan won on Congress ticket in 2015 and later joined RJD. Former Amour MLA and JD(U) leader Saba Zafar is the NDA candidate.
In 2015 assembly polls, Abdul Jalil Mastan of the Congress won the election by a margin of 51,997 votes. Runner-up Saba Zafar of Bharatiya Janata Party received 48,138 votes.
Zainab, 49 is a Kulahia Muslim in Amour constituency.
She told Maktoob that the sitting MLA Congress’s Abdul Zalil Mastan represented Amour six times but didn’t help the people.
“I will vote for Kite (AIMIM’s election symbol), Zainab said.
Bhim Kumar Sah, 23 year student said he is an Ambedkarite and AIMIM cadre.
Sah is now handling the Social Media of Aktharul Iman.
“My politics is based on social justce and welfare of the people,” said Sah.