SocietyPolitics Know Your Candidate: Madhavi Latha’s Bid For Lok Sabha Elections 2024

Know Your Candidate: Madhavi Latha’s Bid For Lok Sabha Elections 2024

Questions have been raised about Latha's commitment to secular values and inclusive politics due to her involvement with Sanatana Dharma.

Madhavi Latha, who is also recognised as Kompella Madhavi Latha, a well-known figure in the contemporary political scenario, is set to make history as she becomes BJP’s first woman contender from Hyderabad in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Latha holds a Bachelor’s degree in Public Administration and a Master’s degree in Political Science. She also holds the position of chairperson at Virinchi Hospitals in Hyderabad.

Entry into politics

Latha is engaged in a political contest against Asaduddin Owaisi from AIMIM. In her bid to challenge Owaisi, a seasoned four-time MP who wields considerable influence in the constituency, Latha seeks to shake up the established order. It is pertinent to mention that the Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat has been consistently held by AIMIM for the past four decades. Salahuddin Owaisi held the seat from 1984 to 1999, and since then, his son Asaduddin has been the winning candidate.

In the Hyderabad Lok Sabha seat, the AIMIM has a strong hold on all the Assembly segments, except for Goshamahal, which is currently represented by the BJP’s T Raja Singh. Therefore, her foray into the world of politics serves as a bold challenge to the longstanding influence of the AIMIM in Hyderabad. Latha’s candidature has generated significant buzz by capturing the attention of both supporters and critics alike. 

Questions have been raised about her commitment to secular values and inclusive politics due to her involvement with religious promoting Sanatana Dharma. Latha has faced criticism for her alleged association with the BJP’s communal agenda, with critics questioning her ability to effectively represent the diverse population of Hyderabad. This concern is especially relevant in a constituency that has a significant Muslim population.  As the political climate heats up, all eyes will be on Latha as she strives to make her mark in this fiercely contested race. 

Owasi and Latha’s long rift 

Latha’s critique of Owaisi centres on the purported absence of progress in the constituency during his tenure. In her bid to appeal to a wider audience, she raises some questions about Owaisi’s position on key issues such as the Uniform Civil Code and the Citizenship Amendment Act. However, critics from the other political parties have raised concerns about Latha’s lack of political experience and accusations of opportunism. There are also doubts about her alignment with Hindutva politics and the internal dynamics surrounding her selection as a candidate within the party.

Source: News 18

Speculations surround her recent foray into politics and her nomination as a candidate by the BJP, with some questioning the sincerity of her intentions and suggesting that her decision may be motivated by opportunism rather than a true dedication to serving the public.

In a surprising move, the BJP has decided to field Latha as their candidate for the upcoming elections, instead of party veteran Bhagavanth Rao Pawar. Pawar had previously contested from the same seat in the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha polls, but unfortunately, he faced significant defeats against Asaduddin on both occasions.

According to sources, her close association with senior RSS leader Indresh Kumar, who she considers a mentor and is the head of the Sangh’s Muslim Rashtriya Manch, played a crucial role in her selection as the candidate for the BJP. This scepticism is fuelled by her relatively minimal involvement in political affairs before the Lok Sabha elections.

The arrow gesture controversy 

Latha found herself embroiled in controversy after a video surfaced showing her making a shooting gesture, allegedly towards a mosque during a Ram Navami procession in old Hyderabad. This incident has sparked controversy and drawn attention to her actions. It has caused a wave of criticism and allegations of provocative behaviour from AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi. He strongly condemned the action, describing it as “vulgar, obscene, and provocative.”

Source: The Print

Owaisi went on to accuse the BJP and RSS of disrupting the peace in the city. Madhavi Latha has addressed the controversy surrounding her video by issuing a clarification on social media. In her statement, she acknowledges that the video was incomplete and expresses her sincere apologies to anyone who may have been distressed by it.

In a statement, the election campaign manager came to her defence, arguing that the video was misleading because it failed to provide the complete context of the event. According to the manager, she had been making the same gesture before the mosque came into view. 

Facing criticism

In a recent interview, the 49-year-old entrepreneur made it clear that her views were not driven by Hindu-Muslim divisions, but rather focused on issues such as triple talaq. Latha responded to the complaint filed against her controversial arrow gesture towards a mosque by dismissing it as baseless. She questioned the accusation, stating that if she held any animosity towards Muslims, she would not have actively participated in a procession during the holy month of Ramzan.

Source: X (Twitter)

Furthermore, she highlighted her efforts in distributing food to numerous individuals, emphasising her commitment to helping others firsthand. Latha emphasised her compassionate nature, highlighting that her motivations were rooted in a genuine concern for societal matters. Despite being a prominent Hindutva figure, Latha has expressed her openness to connect with Muslim voters. She has emphasised her previous connections with Muslim women’s organisations, showcasing her commitment to inclusivity and collaboration.

An intriguing development has emerged in Latha’s campaign, as the notable absence of BJP leader Raja Singh raises questions about the party’s internal dynamics. Reports of internal rifts further hint at a potential lack of unified support for her candidature. These factors have the potential to undermine the party’s cohesion and effectiveness in the upcoming elections.

Note: The article has been updated according to the recent developments in the news.

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