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Muslim representation goes up in
Kerala Assembly

By ARIF ZAIN, Malappuram

Muslim representation has slightly increased in the new Kerala Assembly.The number of Muslim MLAs has gone up from 25 in the last Assembly to 28 in the new one. This constitutes exactly 20 per cent of total seats in the House.

The party-wise break-up of Muslim MLAs shows that in the 1996 election 13 Muslims were elected on Muslim League ticket. In the new Assembly their number will be 16. A non-Muslim candidate Mr.U.C.Raman is also elected on the party ticket.

The number of Muslim MLAs of the Congress has also increased from two in the last Assembly to seven in the newly constituted House. But the number of Muslim MLAs elected on CPI (M) ticket has come down from six to just two in the new Assembly. The NCP, the RSP have one Muslim MLAs each and a Congress rebel is also elected to the new house. The CPI and the Janata Dal (S) had one MLA each in the old Assembly. These parties have drawn a blank this time. A significant feature of this election regarding Muslim votes is the traditional Muslim vote bank of the UDF, which was eroding gradually, after the Babri Masjid episode, has returned to its fold. Voting pattern of thickly Muslim populated areas shows that the Members of the community massively voted for the UDF. The PDP of Abdunnasir Ma’adani, which came into existence in the wake Ayodhya agitation of Sangh parivar and had adopted an anti-Congress and anti-Muslim league policy, has also campaigned for the UDF and voted for it en masse.

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