KARACHI: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement on Saturday sent 11 leaders of its top hierarchy to CM House to discuss issues, chiefly the ones related to the recent arrests of its workers in Mirpurkhas and Tando Allahyar districts, with Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah, officials said.

MQM’s parliamentary leader in the National Assembly Dr Farooq Sattar led the delegation.

Discussing matters related to politics and law and order in the province with the MQM delegation, Chief Minister Shah said his government did not believe in victimisation.

“We are political people and believe in a political discourse.”

According to a provincial government spokesman, Dr Sattar complained that the police in the two districts had arrested a number of party workers a day earlier. Officials said Dr Sattar protested with the CM over the arrests and complained to him that a particular group was instigating violence among the people.

He urged Mr Shah to stop what he described as acts of vengeance against MQM workers. Mr Shah said he did not believe in the politics of revenge and harassment. “There may be some political differences between us but it doesn’t mean we victimise the opponents,” said CM Shah, adding that he had given clear instructions to police not to listen to illegal instructions, if any, even issued by himself.

CM Shah said when former Karachi mayor Mustafa Kamal went to visit Mirpurkhas, he had asked the district administration to urge him and his colleagues to use “decent and tender language” against opponents.

“The police arrested those who tried to create a law and order situation,” he said.

Mr Kamal, who has lately dissociated himself from the MQM and formed his own Pak Sarzameen Party, lashed out at MQM’s self-exiled chief Altaf Hussain during his speeches in Mirpurkhas and Hyderabad.

The chief minister assured the delegation that he would discuss the issue with the deputy inspector general of Mirpurkhas and redress the MQM’s genuine grievances.

Dr Sattar in a lighter mood recited a couplet that roughly translated as “Complaints are too many but those at the helm won’t listen to them”.

In response to this, CM Shah said poetry recited by Dr Sattar clearly reflected his party’s political views. “We are people who believe in love, so kindly recite poetry of love and affection for us,” he replied also in a lighter tone.

Other members of the MQM delegation were Syed Sardar Ahmed, Iqbal Mohammad Ali, Heer Soho, Rehan Zafar and Jamal Ahmed.

Published in Dawn, April 3rd, 2016

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