Last weekend, several Bollywood celebs were spotted at the annual Iftar party hosted by Baba Siddique. Here’s more about the man and his political career
The holy month of Ramadan is underway, and for Bollywood this means it’s that time of the year where the biggest name from the industry attend one of the biggest annual celebrations in the city — Ex-Congress MLA ‘Baba’ Ziauddin Siddique’s Iftar parties. This year too saw a massive event that was organized by Baba Siddique and his son Zeeshan Siddique, current MLA and President of the Mumbai Youth Congress.
Who is Baba Siddique, though? And how did he end up being the man behind Bollywood’s Iftar events for several years? Let’s take a closer look at Siddique’s entry into politics, his subsequent years as one of Mumbai’s major MLAs, and his considerable net worth.
Born Ziauddin Siddique in Patna in 1966, Baba Siddique started off his political career as a student member of the Indian National Congress in 1977 at a young age.
As part of the Mumbai chapter of the National Students Union, Siddique’s youth was characterized by involvement and active participation in Congress student movements during his time at St. Annes High School and M.M.K. College, Bandra. By 1980, he was appointed General Secretary of the Bandra Taluka of the Bandra Youth Congress, only to go on to become its President in just two years.
Through the 1990s, he also took on a key role within the Mumbai Municipal Corporation, working as a Municipal Councilor.
In 1999, in his 22nd year with the Congress Party, Siddique was elected MLA from the Bandra West constituency — a distinction he held and defended for two more elections, until he was ousted in 2014 by BJP’s Ashish Shelar.
Siddique’s MLA tenure was marked with a particular emphasis on improving the upmarket suburb’s security and beautification; it’s now one of the most expensive places to live in the city, with several of his Iftar-party-invitees such as Shah Rukh Khan taking up residence within the area.
Along with his political success in this period, Siddique also amassed a fair bit of personal wealth. According to the myneta.info database, his declared assets sat at just north of Rs 25 crore in 2014, and dropped to Rs. 8.9 crore in 2019.
While it’s unclear why his declared personal wealth dropped by over 50%, it may have been connected with an Enforcement Directorate seizure back in 2017, where Siddique was accused of misusing his position as the Slum Rehabilitation Authority Chairman to carry out a massive Rs 500 crore scam, along with 8 others.
According to sources, Siddique has denied all allegations against him.
While he presided over a considerably influential term as MLA, Siddique’s glitzy Iftar parties — usually held at luxury hotels such as Taj Land’s End — were something of an annual reminder of his wealth and industry connections.
Of all his famous gatherings, the most talked out one is the event held during Ramadan 2013-14, where Shah Rukh Khan and Salman Khan both embraced each other, putting an end to a ‘cold war’ that had reportedly progressed since the actors’ personal altercation back in 2008:
This year’s party saw the actors together, and a massive guestlist, considering that Siddique skipped his party during the two peak years of Covid-19. Shah Rukh Khan was spotted entering the venue:
While Salman posed for photos as well before walking in.
Several other celebrities also turned up, from Sanjay Dutt to Shilpa Shetty and Raj Kundra, Shehnaz Gill, and others.
(Featured Image Credits: @babasiddique/Twitter)