Khidmate Khalq Foundation (KKF), the charitable wing of Muttahida Quami Moment (MQM), Pakistan’s fourth-largest political and parliamentary party, has called off the operation of collection of animal due to large scale victimization, raids, arrests of workers and volunteers and harassment by Para Military Rangers in Pakistan's largest city of Karachi & other cites of Sindh Province.
This was announced by KKF Trustee and senior MQM leader Dr. Farooq Sattar in an emergency Press Conference in Karachi with other Trustees of KKF.
The collection of animal hides on behalf of charity is an annual Eid event for the volunteers of the KKF. Despite having received the official permission of collection of hides by the Commissioner of Karachi, Para Military Rangers didn't freely allow KKF to collect hides throughout Sindh province. More than hundred trucks-loads of donated hides were illegally seized by Rangers in Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkar, Nawabshah, Mirpurkhas & other cities of Sindh Province. These hides were voluntarily given to the KKF by public.
Hundreds of innocent MQM workers, office bearers and volunteers of KKF were summarily arrested by Rangersduring hides collection and they implicated in false & fabricated cases, their whereabouts now unknown.
Neither MQM nor the KKF has been provided any legal justification for the seizure. The party has also receivedreports of private citizens being arrested by the authorities whilst attempting donations.
The Founder and Leader of MQM, Mr Altaf Hussain, said “KKF volunteers collect hides during Eid every year; the money KKF raises by selling these hides is used to help the poorest citizens of Pakistan as well as victims of natural calamities. KKF also runs various hospitals, schools, a university, medical dispensaries, blood banks, morgues, a fleet of 200 ambulances and dozens of coffin-carriers. It is unacceptable that KKF volunteers engaged in such charitable activity can be arrested by Paramilitary Rangers without committing any wrongdoing. I demand their immediate release.”
In recent years, MQM has been the most vocal political party against the rising tide of extremism and terrorism in Pakistan. It has also consistently raised concerns over gender and religious inequality and the unmet needs of the poorest citizens of Pakistan’s largest city. This has come at great cost; the party has lost hundreds of workers and four sitting lawmakers in the last two years because of its liberal stance in the face of terrorism and state repression. This latest action is yet another example of the apparatus of the Pakistani state being used to repress the legitimate activities of an elected body, as well as the charitable actions of individual citizens.