MIM row: Only EC can ban a party, says Nawab Malik

Even as NCP minister for labour Hasan Mushrif has asked for a ban on political party Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM), whose Hyderabad MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi was arrested for delivering communally inflammatory speeches, NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said only the Election Commission has the powers to ban or derecognize a political party.

Malik on Thursday said that while no one can tolerate the way in which Owaisi inflamed communal passions and spoke against a community, a political party cannot ask for a ban on another party.

"Freedom of speech comes with certain limitations that have been breached by Owaisi. But only the Election Commission can initiate action for banning a party," said Malik.

The party that has 11 elected corporators in Nanded has organised a public address by Owaisi in Aurangabad on February 2.

Home Minister R R Patil had on Wednesday said that if Owaisi plans to deliver the same kind of speeches in the state, he will not be allowed to enter the state.

Meanwhile, Malik also asked for a judicial probe into the Dhule riots and said that a team should be formed to study the scenario in communally sensitive regions of Maharashtra.

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