Bilawal to launch drive against PTI govt on Karsaz carnage anniversary today

Updated 18 Oct 2019

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A MAN paints the makeshift stairs of the under-construction stage for PPP’s public meeting at the venue on Thursday.—Online
A MAN paints the makeshift stairs of the under-construction stage for PPP’s public meeting at the venue on Thursday.—Online

KARACHI: The Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) is set to launch its movement against the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf government on Friday (today) with a rally in Karachi. The rally also marks the 12th anniversary of the 2007 Karsaz carnage.

The rally is to be held on New M.A. Jinnah Road opposite the Quaid’s mausoleum.

Sindh Minister for Information Saeed Ghani, addressing a press conference at the PPP information cell along with other party leaders here on Thursday, said that the power show in the metropolis would be the first of the countrywide protest movement.

He said that like every year, the Oct 18 carnage anniversary would be observed by party workers with utmost devotion and respect.

“PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari will launch the campaign with the aim of taking people into confidence, he said.

‘Movement is aimed at taking people into confidence’

According to him, a traffic plan has been made to ensure that people do not face any trouble due to the public meeting.

“In the past, processions used to come from every district which caused inconvenience to people, but this time they will hopefully not face trouble, he added.

About the day’s programme, he said PPP leaders and members would visit the Karsaz tragedy memorial. People of Karachi and the rest of Sindh would also be there to prove their loyalty with the party.

Speaking about the Larkana re-election process, the minister claimed that PPP candidate Jamil Soomro was stopped outside a polling station. “In the recent Ghotki by-election, Prime Minister Imran Khan and Governor Imran Ismail openly violated the Election Commission’s rules and regulations but no action was taken against them,” he said.

The Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) and National Accountability Bureau (NAB), he alleged, were abusing their powers while dealing with matters pertaining to leaders of PPP and other opposition parties. “Nowhere in world democracies, opposition parties are treated as enemies of state; they are respected and treated as the true voice of people and a check on the governance,” he observed.

Mr Ghani said that the Oct 18 [Karsaz carnage] and Dec 27 [Benazir Bhutto’s assassination] of 2007 could not be separated from each other as both of the nefarious acts might have been committed by the same group.

He recalled that PPP chairperson and former prime minister Benazir Bhutto had returned home from her self-imposed exile on Oct 18, 2007 but when she along with thousands of her party colleagues, workers and supporters reached Karsaz from Karachi airport two back-to-back bomb blasts occurred which killed more than 200 people. Although Ms Bhutto had survived in the attack, she was assassinated in a gun and bomb attack in Rawalpindi on Dec 27 the same year.

Published in Dawn, October 18th, 2019