KARACHI: The three centre-left political parties part of the previous federal coalition government, namely the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Awami National Party (ANP), vowed to fight terror and brave targeted attacks by the banned Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant organisation while contesting the upcoming general elections, DawnNews reported.
MQM’s Haider Abbas Rizvi, ANP’s Bashir Jan and Taj Haider belonging to the PPP held a joint press conference at the Karachi Press Club where the parties reiterated their stance to contest the upcoming election amid terrorist threats.
Haider Abbas Rizvi said that his party would not surrender itself to extremists forces and that the terrorist and bomb attacks would not deter the party during the upcoming elections.
ANP’s Sindh secretary general Bashir Jan said that the party had rendered sacrifices before and refered to the assassination of party leader Bashir Bilour and the murder of the son of then provincial information minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa belonging to the ANP, Mian Iftikhar Hussain.
Jan also claimed that there was no influx of Taliban militants in Karachi during the operation in Swat and that only internally displaced refugees had fled from the restive areas to Karachi.
He added that the party had buried 650 members in a single day and yet they remain resolved to contest the upcoming elections.
He questioned the Taliban’s double standards who had declared democracy as an un-Islamic process on one hand and on the other hand the oraganisation’s political wing had distributed pamphlets claiming that jihad must be carried out through vote.
When questioned about the previous apprehensions expressed during the rule of the previous coalition government regarding talibanisation in Karachi, PPP’s senior leader Taj Haider mentioned the Waziristan operation and other military operations conducted against militants in the tribal regions while claiming that militants had the support of certain right-wing political parties who were helping the attacks on left-wing liberal parties.
Haider ruled out the possibility of a complete military takeover and said that the Army could be called in only if the situation demanded and that too for only the maintenance of law and order.
He also questioned the silence over the killings of civialians in the targeted militant attacks by those political parties whiach had raised their voices against the drone strikes carried out on Pakistani territory.
The TTP has recently stepped up its targeted attacksagainst the parties raising concerns about the impact of such incidentson the upcoming elections.