KARACHI: For the first time in more than three decades, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement has announced that it will not collect hides of sacrificial animals on Eidul Azha this year for its welfare projects under the Khidmat-i-Khalq Foundation (KKF), citing “unfavourable conditions” and for being “constant target of state institutions”.

The announcement was made by Muttahida leader Dr Farooq Sattar at a press conference on Saturday. He said the party reached the decision after consultation with the coordination committee and all office-bearers of the KKF.

The leader of the party, which had been winning annual major share of hides collection in the metropolis for decades, decided to stay away from the process considering the situation on ground that did not allow the party to go for this “social welfare activity”.

“To generate funds for our social welfare projects, we have only two options, which are Zakat and Fitra collection in Ramazan and hides collection on Eid-ul-Azha,” Dr Sattar told a press conference at the party’s temporary headquarters in PIB Colony.

“However, for the past one year, we have not been allowed to carry on with the activities. We were denied this right. We are being forced to announce that we are not collecting hides this Eid.”

Last year, he said, the law-enforcement agencies ‘snatched truckloads of hides’ donated to the KKF and then handed them over to other charity organisations. The law-enforcement agencies did not allow KKF volunteers to collect hides and they “illegally seized hundreds of truckloads of hides” in Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkur and other parts of Sindh, he added.

The MQM leader said the snatching of truckloads of hides by the law-enforcement agencies despite the fact that the KKF had been granted permission was against the law, the constitution and the official code of conduct.

“And it did not end here,” added Dr Sattar. “Our dozens of workers and volunteers were arrested in the process who were only collecting hides and then they were booked under false charges. So we decided to stay away from this welfare work only to keep our workers safe as we don’t want to waste our energy under the given circumstances. This gap will allow us to reorganise the KKF and MQM.”

Published in Dawn September 11th, 2016

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