The NCP leader takes a pro-Gaza stand to woo Muslim voters ahead of assembly election.
People across the world have been condemning Israeli air strike on Gaza. Now NCP MLA Jitendra Awhad has come forward to express solidarity for the victims who have died in air strikes by wearing t-shirts which carried messages like ‘Save Gaza’, ‘Support Gaza’ and ‘Pray for Gaza’. Awhad along with his party supporters chanted slogans ‘Gaza Vachva’. Jitendra Awhad already has a large support base from the Muslim community which constitutes a sizeable number of the population in areas like Mumbra and Kalwa.
The NCP is perceived as a party which has been known to work for the welfare of Marathas. In the past there has been no serious attempt from the party to win over the Muslim voters who command a sizeable presence of close to 15 per cent in Maharashtra. According to political analysts, Awhad might be adopting this stand to lure the Muslim community before the assembly election
Awhad appealed to his followers to tone down his birthday celebrations on 5th August, 2014 and said, “A humble request to my friends and followers – in view of the grim situation faced by unfortunate victims of Malin tragedy and the people in Gaza strip, I request you to celebrate my birthday in simple manner. You could instead donate for the cause of Malin victims.”
Awhad posted a message on his facebook where he mentioned, “Israeli pounding and killing innocent people. We support the cause of Palestine; Indian government should intervene to stop the massacre.”
In the ongoing clash between Gaza and Israel, India has not supported anyone because according to external affair minister it can affect the nation’s diplomatic ties with Israel and Palestine.
Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj said, “We have diplomatic ties with both nations. Any discourteous reference to any friendly country can impact our relations with them.”
Many people have come forward in support of Gaza but it had created troubles for them.
A Malaysian cyclist at the Commonwealth Games who wore gloves with “Save Gaza” written on them has been reprimanded by his team. The administration warned that he will be expelled if he repeats this act.
An engineering college belonging to Muslim Educational Society (MES), Qatar, suspended six students for allegedly wearing ‘Save Gaza’ badges on campus.
Moeen Ali, the England batsman was banned from wearing “Save Gaza” and “Free Palestine” wristbands for the remainder of third Test against India. Ali has been banned from wearing wristbands with a political message by the International Cricket Council.