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Sindh Assembly mourns legislator’s killing

June 23, 2013

KARACHI, June 22: The Sindh Assembly on Saturday mourned the killing of Muttahida Qaumi Movement lawmaker Sajid Qureshi and his son, and as a mark of respect to the assassinated MPA, adjourned the session till 9.30am on Monday.

Before the adjournment a number of lawmakers in their brief speeches condemned the spree of targeted killings saying outlaws had started targeting even provincial legislators.

Information Minister Sharjeel Inam Memon said the entire house, PPP members and all other lawmakers equally shred the grief.

Referring to the criticism of the chief minister for keeping the home department with him, he said the CM was discharging his responsibilities as home minister honestly and diligently. He said being a minister the CM had attended meetings on law and order at which he had given a free hand to all law-enforcement agencies, including the police who had lost their 60 personnel so far this year. He said the home minister’s job was to give a policy guideline and not to fight personally, and that responsibility was being discharged very well by the chief minister.

After the speeches, he also moved a motion for adjourning the session as a mark of respect for the assassinated MPA.

Earlier, Speaker Agha Siraj Durrani gave the floor to MQM parliamentary party leader Syed Sardar Ahmad.

In his speech, Mr Ahmad said such heartrending incidents as Friday’s were increasing. “It was extremely painful that our very dear colleague was targeted brutally when he and his son, who had recently returned after completing higher education abroad, were returning after offering Friday prayers.

Deputy Parliamentary Party leader Khwaja Izharul Hasan said gunmen had become so bold that they now targeted anyone they liked and sent a message to all democratic and state institutions that they were more powerful than the authorities.

PML-N parliamentary party leader Irfanullah Khan Marwat, expressing his sorrow over the tragedy, said targeted killings in Karachi were on the rise and the other day he had referred to it but his point of view was not taken seriously. He said if a member of this august house was not safe, who else could be. It was time that the house pondered what measures be taken to meet the challenge.

PML-F parliamentary party leader Nusrat Seher Abbasi regretting the incident referred to people killed elsewhere and said instead of just offering Fateha, the government should make efforts to improve the situation in Karachi.

PTI parliamentary party leader Hafeezuddin said the incident called for taking notice by all of us but regretted that the government appeared not serious as neither the chief minister nor other authorities concerned were present in the house.

PML-F leader Mehtab Rashdi said a statement by a minister that the law and order situation had persisted since 1986 was not enough. The ruling party had been in power for the last five years and the party whose MPA was targeted was also a partner in the government. The government should take steps for the security of life and property of the people.

She also advised the MQM, without mentioning it by name, to follow other provinces and cities where people mourned such tragedies without bringing life to a standstill.

The others who spoke included Syeda Shehla Raza and Manzoor Wasan of the PPP, Syed Waqar Hussain Shah of the MQM, and Sardar Muqeem Khoso, who had taken the oath earlier in the day. Besides for the MPA, the house also offered Fateha for the 15 people killed in Peshawar and the Bilal Colony firing, in which a number of people were killed.