Azharuddin named Telangana Congress working president

Azharuddin named Telangana Congress working president

Former Congress MP Mohammed Azharuddin. File photo

Almost a decade after starting his political innings, cricketer-turned-politician Mohammed Azharuddin has come back to his home-state of Telangana as the working president of the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC).

Congress president Rahul Gandhi has approved his appointment.

The Hyderabad-born had been desperately trying to come back to Telangana, either through the cricket or politics.

His attempts to get into the Hyderabad Cricket Association were unsuccessful due to the internal politics.

He, however, has succeeded in returning as a politician. After joining the Congress in 2009, he got elected to the Lok Sabha from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh but lost from Tonk Sawai Madhopur in Rajasthan in the 2014 election.

According to sources, Azhar was unhappy with poor recognition in the Congress after he faced defeat in Tonk-Sawai Madhopur.

Recently, there was talk that he had made arrangements to join the TRS during the ongoing campaign for the December 7 Assembly polls.

Around the same time, some Muslim leaders such as Rasool Khan, who is said to be close to Azhar, have left the Congress, charging it with meting out a raw deal to the community in the allotment of seats. These leaders joined the TRS.

However, Sonia Gandhi's confidant Ahmed Patel is said to have pacified Azhar, promising recognition in the TPCC as working president. He has a good following in the state.

Azhar is keen to contest from Secunderabad constituency in the 2019 general election.

He had turned down the party's advice to contest from Hyderabad against Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) party chief Asaduddin Owaisi. 

Secunderabad is presently represented by BJP's Bandaru Dattatreya.