Guj local bodies polls: Survivor of 2002 riots joins AIMIM

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Ahmedabad, Feb 8 (PTI) Imtiaz Khan Pathan, a survivor of the 2002 Gulberg Society massacre during the Gujarat communal riots who lost ten members of his family in the violence, on Monday joined the AIMIM ahead of the elections to local bodies, and blamed the Congress for failing to help the riot victims.

Pathan was also a key witness for the Special Investigation Team (SIT) formed by the Supreme Court to investigate the riots cases in Gujarat.

He and several others joined the Asaduddin Owaisi-led All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), which is contesting maiden elections in Gujarat--in Ahmedabad and Bharuch cities--in alliance with the Bhartiya Tribal Party (BTP), in the presence of the AIMIM state president Sabir Kabuliwala.

Former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri was killed along with 68 others when a mob attacked the Gulberg Society in Ahmedabad on February 28, 2002, in the aftermath of the Godhra train burning incident.

'I am joining the AIMIM because the Congress party failed to help people like me. The Congress ruled the Centre between 2002 and 2014, but we failed to get any support from that party.

Pathan had unsuccessfully contested the 2019 Lok Sabha elections on the ticket of Apna Desh Party from Kheda constituency.

'Such a big leader (Jafri) of the Congress was killed, but we are still running to the courts. The Congress could have done things right in ten years, but it did nothing.

The Congress is behind making Narendra Modi the Prime Minister,' he said.

The AIMIM has fielded 21 candidates for six wards in Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation which will go to polls on February21. PTI KA NSK NSK