KARACHI: The Sunni Tehrik, hitherto known as a religious organisation, announced on Sunday that it was converting itself into a political party to be called Pakistan Sunni Tehrik (PST). The announcement was made by the head of the Tehrik, Maulana Sarwat Ejaz Quaderi, who was addressing the “Pakistan Bachao Janisaran-i-Mustafa Conference” held in Nishtar Park among slogans of “Pakistan ki safety, PST, PST”.
Mr Quaderi said the PST would launch its political campaign on March 23 with a rally at Minar-i-Pakistan in Lahore and unveil its manifesto and programme which would aim at ushering in a ‘Mustafvi Revolution’ to eliminate injustices and terrorism.
He said the party would strive for the supremacy of law, adding that student wings of the party had already been set up in colleges and universities under the name of Pakistan Islamic Student Federation.
He said the PST would field its candidates throughout Pakistan.
There will be no hereditary politics and the only criteria for leadership will be commitment to service, sacrifice and fear of Allah Almighty.
“Our journey will be for martyrdom for the glory of Islam and survival of Pakistan,” he said. The main objective of the party will be to turn Pakistan into a welfare state.
Maulana Quaderi said that although 63 leaders and workers of the party had been killed it had not given up its message of peace, love and fraternity. It upheld the rule of law and continued its struggle against soaring prices, terrorism, oppression and injustices by organising rallies in Karachi, Sukkur, Lahore and Islamabad.
He said that everyone talked about accountability, but no-one took the first step of starting it from himself or from his own party.
“But from here, I start accountability of our leaders who neither own any plot or asset nor any bank accounts within the country or abroad. Their total assets and accounts are the people of Pakistan and the motherland.”
He criticised the PML-N and JUI, without naming them, and accused them of using the sacred name of Islam for their political ends. He said Islam could not be enforced by people sitting in Islamabad.
He said when the aspirations of the party (meaning JUI) were not met its leaders quit the government and started exploiting the sacred name of Islam. These people, he alleged, were in politics for the sake of dollars and riyals and not for Islam.
He accused another political party of ‘providing oxygen’ to banned organisations which were involved in acts of terrorism across the country and said that his party had decided to join politics to eradicate the menace of terrorism and “enlightened tsunami”.
Referring to US drone attacks, he said these were not the result of policies of the GHO or agencies, but a reaction to acts of extremists who did not hesitate to kill their fellow Muslims by declaring them infidels and cutting their throats and limbs by using the sacred name of Islam.
They were now planning to impost their ideology by force in Sindh and Punjab, he said.
Maulana Quaderi referred to assassination of two activists of the party on Sunday and warned the government that if their killers were not arrested within 24 hours, his party would hold a sit-in outside the CM House and Governor House.
Earlier, Allama Shah Turabul Haq said that the wave of terrorism could have been checked by arresting the culprits behind the Nishtar Park bomb blast.
The real assassins who organised the suicide bombing, he said, were yet to be arrested.
Haji Hanif Tayyab said the country was in grip of soaring prices, corruption and mismanagement, but the government had no time to pay attention to problems which had hit all segments of society, especially the poor and lower middle classes.
Other leaders who addressed the conference were Ali Nawaz Khaskheli, Shahibzada Rehan Nomani, Shabbir Abu Talib, Pir Rizwan Jeelani and Tariq Mehmood.Strict security arrangements had been made at the venue of the meeting to avert any untoward incident. Besides Rangers and police, activists of the party manned all entry and exit points.