Mumbai: All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) president Asaduddin Owaisi has dissolved its district units in Maharashtra, barring Mumbai and Thane, with immediate effect to curb infighting, a party official said here on Tuesday.
Hyderabad-based Owaisi appointed a nine-member core committee to tour all districts in Maharashtra and appoint new district committees in four months, besides expanding the party influence to non-Muslim pockets.
The development comes in the wake of defeat of party nominee Mazhar Maniyar in Kondhwa by-poll to Pune Municipal Corporation this month, said party spokesperson Imtiaz Jaleel, a legislator from Aurangabad.
"The AIMIM has been growing at a much faster rate than anticipated. We have also been notching spectacular victories in civic and assembly elections. The Pune setback has been taken seriously by the party high command, which dissolved the dozen-odd units in this state," Jaleel told IANS.
"The nine-member core committee will interview potential candidates, assess their strengths and weaknesses at district and taluka levels before making appointments. Each office-bearer will now hold party post(s) for one year," Jaleel said.
Two AIMIM legislators - Jaleel and Waris Pathan from Mumbai - have excused themselves from the party task to concentrate on their legislative responsibilities.
The core committee comprises Syed Moin and Ibrahim Ali Abu (Nanded), Maulana Mehfuzoor Rehman, Pandit Borde and Gaffar Qadri (Aurangabad), Mohammed Saleem and Vilas Dongre (Nagpur), Mohammed Ali (Latur) and Anjum Inamdar (Pune).
AIMIM plans to contest municipal corporation elections slated for early 2017 in Mumbai, Thane, Navi Mumbai and other major cities.
Asked whether the Maharashtra exercise would be repeated elsewhere, Jaleel replied in the negative, but said "this is a clear message to other state units to get their acts together."
AIMIM secured two seats in Maharashtra assembly elections last year, came second in three seats and third in another eight seats, out of the 24 it contested. It cornered more than half a million votes.
Since it first entered the Nanded municipal council in 2012, AIMIM has made steady inroads at the grass-roots level and notched victories in several other civic bodies over the past few years, including Aurangabad and Solapur.