HYDERABAD: Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan convener Dr Khalid Mabqool Siddiqui has said that delimitations had been carried out on linguistic lines in Karachi and the results of NA-249 by-polls reflected manipulation of population.

Siddiqui told journalists after addressing a charity programme organised by Khidmat-i-Khalq Foundation (KKF) at Mir Garden here on Saturday that the people who made up 70 per cent of the population in Karachi were under-counted in census.

He said that population of the areas dominated by Urdu-speaking communities was not properly reflected in figures. The NA-249 was a specially carved out constituency where MQM represented a smaller population and the party contested polls only to keep peoples’ trust in democracy intact, he said.

He said that MQM would not sacrifice its principles in order to win election. Results of NA-249 were reflective of the arrangements being made for upcoming elections, he said.

He said that the constituency’s result was prepared after population manipulation. MQM was analyzing the fact why results were withheld, he said.

He said that Pakistan Peoples Party believed in plundering Karachi and the party would not even prefer federal government over Karachi. Everyone knew Sindh had been handed over to PPP for the past 12 years, he said.

He said that weapons recovered during a raid on Azizabad headquarters in 2011 were licensed which were kept by MQM parliamentarians on the advice of law enforcement agencies in view of a wave of extremism in the country because the party was challenging extremist forces and Talban at that time.

He said that workers were booked in the case but trial was delayed for several years only to deny them bail. Now they had been acquitted, he said, adding it was part of 40 years history of injustice to MQM.

He said that whatever federal government had announced for Karachi was in fact earned by this city. The federal government was not giving it out of its pocket, he said.

Siddiqui said earlier in his address at the progrmmae that people should take coronavirus situation seriously and said every individual step for complying with standard operating procedures (SOPs) amo­un­ted to collective compliance.

He said that people of Karachi and Hyderabad were contributing to their cities because their forefathers had laid sacrifices for the country. Hyderabad used to be the third largest city of Pakistan but now no one remembered its rank, he said.

He said that Karachi paid taxes for the entire country but half of its population was not counted. In terms of tax contribution Hyderabad would still be third or fourth largest city, he said.

He said that Hyderabad contributed larger chunk to taxes but it did not get its share in terms of development and if it got same share it would not need anything. MQM nazim had upgraded healthcare facilities in the past but after PPP came to power Sindh government even shifted ventilators and incubators from these facilities to other smaller cities.

He said that MQM faced an undeclared ban on its charity work. Even banners of KKF had been removed in Karachi whereas proscribed organisations’ banners were still hoisted in the metropolis. KKF had won the ‘serving the masses’ award in 2005 earthquake, he said.

He said that those who had tried to work against MQM had surpassed all limits but MQM was still standing firm. Regardless of changes in politics MQM would not change its principles to win elections, he said.

He said that the way elections were held in the country and the kind of results produced had made people lose trust in polls, electoral process and democracy. Democracy was still the only way to extricate Pakistan out of crisis but true democracy did not have any room for dynastic and feudal politics, he said.

MQM senior deputy convener Amir Khan said that MQM silently delivered Rs6m worth ration to poor families at their doorsteps. MQM would keep working despite all odds, he said.

He expressed concern over increasing number of coronavirus cases and said that all beds had filled to capacity and more hospitals would have to be equipped to handle coronavirus cases.

Published in Dawn, May 2nd, 2021

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