HYDERABAD / KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement chief Altaf Hussain has stressed the need for unity among people and appealed to writers, intellectuals and journalists of Sindh to play their role in eliminating differences between the old and new Sindhis.
“I also urge my Sindhi brothers that MQM is your own party…come join it,” he said in his telephone address from London to a large public meeting in Hyderabad’s Bagh-i-Mustafa area on Sunday night to mark the party’s 28th foundation day.
A large number of MQM workers, including women, also gathered in Karachi’s Lal Qila ground to listen to Mr Hussain’s speech, which was simultaneously aired in 31 other places across the country.
The Muttahida chief said if the ruling elite wanted a prosperous and developed Pakistan they should strengthen Sindh by giving its people their rights. They should also give the people of Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Punjab and Azad Kashmir their rights, he added.
He said he had been in exile for 20 years because his only crime was to send middle-class people to parliament and not to accept money from the ISI and other agencies.
Speaking about the lawlessness in Karachi, he said no other party except the MQM had raised voice against the extortion mafia which targeted industrialists, traders and businessmen.
Congratulating President Asif Zardari on his fifth address to a joint session of parliament, Mr Hussain urged him to ensure elimination of extortion mafia and street crime and order indiscriminate action against those involved in these crimes irrespective of their political affiliations. He also sought president’s intervention in getting the law and order situation in Sindh improved.
He reminded the PPP leadership that MQM had supported the PPP during difficult times and, therefore, it should reciprocate with the same spirit.
He deplored that there was little in the present day Pakistan to satisfy the common man, adding that feudal system and politics of rich people had weakened the country.
MQM on the contrary, he said, is neither a socialist or communist party nor was it against private industries. “We are against the uncontrolled capitalism.”
Regarding problems in Hyderabad, Mr Hussain said there was no university for the people of the city. He requested Sindh Governor Dr Ishratul Ibad and members of the provincial assembly to take initiative to pass a bill seeking establishment of the Hyderabad University. He urged the provincial government to take steps for laying an effective sewerage system in Latifabad and setting up a cardiovascular hospital in Hyderabad.
The issue of suspension of educational activities in the Sindh University drew Mr Hussain’s attention. He urged Mr Ibad, who is
chancellor of public sector universities in the province, to take measures for restoring academic activities on the campus. He urged the government to take measures for eliminating power and gas loadshedding in Hyderabad and release special local government funds for the city.
He congratulated the people on the 28th foundation day of the MQM and said his party would change the destiny of the oppressed and middle class people. He urged people not to vote for any jagirdar, sardar or capitalist in future. He said that although the MQM had not been able to achieve all the rights for poor people, he was striving hard to achieve the objective.
Mr Hussain said he had refused to take money from the ISI, adding that former ISI officer Imtiaz and former Mehran Bank president Younus Habib had admitted in the media that he was the only politician who had declined to accept the money. He called upon the people not to be hoodwinked by the so-called nationalists and said the MQM was the only party in the country which was against sectarianism and believed in unity. He said if his party came to power in the next elections it would abolish the word “minorities”.
The MQM chief announced Rs1.5 million for the Hyderabad Press Club.