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KARACHI: Condemning a “concerted” effort from certain quarters aimed at disturbing the historical demographics of Sindh, Sindh United Party president Syed Jalal Mehmood Shah on Tuesday demanded that the government put all “illegal aliens” from Myanmar, Bangladesh and Afghanistan in camps.

“We demand the governments in Islamabad and Sindh to register Burmese, Bengalis and Afghans as foreigners and put them into camps as the foremost measure,” he told reporters after conclusion of a multiparty conference (MPC) at Hyder Manzil.

He was accompanied by Ali Nawaz Butt of the Jeay Sindh Mahaz, Dr Niaz Kalani of the Jeay Sindh Qaumi Mahaz, Mazhar Rahujo of Qaumi Awami Tehreek, Gulzar Soomro of the Sindh Taraqqi-pasand Party, and Jeay Sindh Tehreek’s Fateh Channa.

Speaking at the press conference, Mr Shah said several sub-nationalist parties had participated in the multiparty moot to discuss the worrying statements issued by some powerful elements in the federal government advocating the grant of citizenship to the illegally settled people originally hailing from Myanmar, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.

He said all leaders of the parties who showed up in the conference unanimously agreed on the notion that it would be against the very existence of Sindh if these illegal “aliens” were granted Pakistani citizenship.

“This move from Islamabad and its cohorts in Sindh is part of a decades-old conspiracy aimed at changing the historical demography of Sindh,” said Mr Shah, grandson of legendary Sindhi nationalist leader late G.M. Syed.

He said all the parties that attended the meeting were united to confront and defeat such a well-orchestrated “conspiracy”.

“We condemn federal Minister of State Talal Chaudhry, governor of Sindh and others who have openly supported granting citizenship to Burmese, Bengalis, Afghans and others.”

He said Sindh had got itself affiliated with the federation of Pakistan in 1947 as a historical national entity and it had the constitutional right to defend its demography in the same federation.

“Thus,” said the SUP leader, “the people of Sindh would not accept the settlement of foreigners on its soil and they have the right to take to streets if legislators in Islamabad or the provinces made laws in favour of granting citizenship to those foreigners.”

Mr Shah declared Nov 19 as a protest day when the SUP and other allied parties would take out rallies and hold demonstrations against the settlement of “foreigners” across Sindh.

Published in Dawn, November 15th, 2017