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MQM chief Altaf Hussain.—File Photo
MQM chief Altaf Hussain.—File Photo

THE national political landscape has rapidly changed following the general elections and as recent events have shown, one of the parties under-going considerable internal changes is the MQM. The incident that kicked off the current crisis seems to be Altaf Hussain’s impolitic statement (later clarified) targeted at PTI supporters protesting against alleged rigging soon after the elections. From that point on, one dramatic event after another involving the Muttahida has unfolded. Following Imran Khan’s unsubstantiated allegation holding Mr Hussain responsible for the murder of a PTI leader and the subsequent uproar, MQM workers turned on many of their leaders at the party’s headquarters in Karachi. On May 21, the Karachi Tanzeemi Committee, a key body in the party’s organisational structure, was disbanded while on Thursday, the main Coordination, or Rabita, Committee was dissolved. Altaf Hussain told his party workers that he was cleansing the party of “corrupt and unwanted elements”, and that those collecting ‘donations’ on the MQM’s behalf or involved in land-grabbing would be expelled.

The issues rightly pointed out by Mr Hussain, coupled with the reputation for high-handedness that has dogged the MQM for many years, seem to have had an impact on voters in Karachi. Though the MQM managed to bag nearly all the seats it contested from the metropolis, the PTI’s candidates put up a decent show, finishing second behind the MQM on many seats. ECP figures confirm the MQM’s vote bank has shrunk — though slightly. This shows the voter cannot be taken for granted. The time has come for the MQM to do some soul-searching and address the negative perceptions about it. Unless the issues confronting the MQM are addressed in a forthright manner, there’s no guarantee the party will continue to dominate politically in urban Sindh.

Comments (5) Closed

Azam May 27, 2013 12:27am
If MQM is really serious about Karachiites and wants to change for the betterment of the people then why not have an alliance with PTI? I am pretty sure that Karachiites would welcome such a an alliance and they will support MQM. MQM has tried their luck with both PML N and PPP but that has not helped. An alliance with PTI could be a fresh start for MQM and both PTI and MQM can benefit from each other. These 2 parties can strengthen the wave of Change and work together in all over Pakistan to bring this change. They can come as victorious in the next elections.
Khan May 27, 2013 03:15am
At least MQM accept the problem and start rectifying it, the same is needed from everyone that to accept the problem and then try to solve it.
tarar916 May 27, 2013 10:08am
I simply cannot comprehend, what MQM is targeting after all this. It was Altaf Hussain who gave controversial statements, not the lower party workers and rabta committee. And still its Altaf Hussain who is cleansing the party of all the supposed corruption etc. The man under fire by media and public is Altaf Hussain and not the rabta committe. There is something wrong with what is being done here. Its beyond a common man's perception.
tarar916 May 27, 2013 10:14am
this is beyond comprehension. All the controversy was created by Altaf Hussain himself when he threatened on two fronts. It was not the rabta committee who is being replaced and penalised by Altaf Hussain. And now he is doing so called cleansing in the party because his Rabta committee was not upto the required standard. who is he making an idiot. Us or himself?
Reas May 27, 2013 02:42pm
Good editorial. You write "The time has come for the MQM to do some soul-searching and address the negative perceptions about it. Unless the issues confronting the MQM are addressed in a forthright manner, there