From L to R- Asaduddin Owaisi, Yusuf Pathan and Iqra Choudhary. (Source: PTI and Instagram/ iqra.choudhary26)

By Rounak Bagchi

Of the 78 Muslim candidates who contested the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, only 24 have managed to win across the country, a number that keeps going down over the years.

In 2019, only 26 Muslim candidates were elected as Members of Parliament, four belonging to the Congress and TMC each, three from the BSP and SP each, and one each of the NCP and CPI(M).

This year, Congress candidate Imran Masood from Saharanpur won by a margin of 64,542 votes while Iqra Choudhary, a 29-year-old Samajwadi Party candidate from Kairana, secured victory over BJP Pradeep Kumar by 69,116 votes.

Ghazipur saw SP veteran Afzal Ansari go past the BJP’s Pars Nath Rai, securing a lakh more votes than his rival, while AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi retained his Hyderabad seat by a margin of 3,38,087 votes over his nearest rival BJP’s Madhavi Latha Kompella. In Ladakh, Independent candidate Mohammad Haneefa secured a victory by a margin of 27,862 votes while another Independent candidate Abdul Rashid Sheikh, aka Engineer Rashid, won the Jammu and Kashmir’s Baramulla seat, bagging 4.7 lakh votes.

In Uttar Pradesh, Samajwadi Party’s Mohibbullah won the Rampur seat by securing 4,81,503 votes, while Zia Ur Rehman won in Sambhal by a margin of 1.2 lakh votes. Mian Altaf Ahmad of the National Conference won in Jammu and Kahsmir’s Anantnag-Rajouri seat by 2,81,794 votes against former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Mehbooba Mufti. In Srinagar NC candidate Aga Syed Ruhullah Mehdi secured 3,56,866 votes.

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