For more than seven decades, the choice of leadership for our independent nation has been a game of musical chairs—most part between the Congress and ‘others’, and lately between the BJP and Congress. Every five years, the chair was grabbed, expectedly, by either of the two, while the country, not spoilt for choice, accepted the results as a clear victory of good over evil.
With a third player now making room for itself, the Hyderabad-based All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) has changed the face of Indian politics with a new set of rules framed by its inimitable party leader, the outspoken and eloquent Asaduddin Owaisi. The party’s stunning performance in the recent Bihar elections marked its debut in northern India, though winning five seats, where the assembly has 243 MLAs, may sound insignificant. But after the November 10 results, it is these five seats that have made the biggest waves across the nation. These unprecedented results in the north have shaken and woken parties that for more than 70 years claimed ancestral rights over Muslim votes.