KARACHI: The protest sit-in of the Jamaat-i-Islami outside the Sindh Assembly against the Sindh Local Government (Amendment) Act, 2021 entered the second day on Saturday.

Gawadar Rights Move­ment leader Maulana Hidayat ur Rehman and repr­esen­tatives of various bodies belonging to the trade and industry, doctors and lawyers and other professions visited the sit-in to express solidarity with protesters.

A large number of people stayed outside the assembly on the New Year’s night despite tough weather and chilling winds.

Sindh JI chief Mohammad Hussain Mehanti addressed the protesters on the second day.

He said the PPP government had failed to serve the province. He demanded empowerment for Karachi and direct election for the city mayor. He warned the Sindh government of province-wide protests.

JI Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman said his party would continue the sit-in and women would join the sit-in on Monday.

The PPP government compelled the masses to hold this protest, he added.

He commended the participants in the sit-in for their steadfastness. “Kara­chi is a city that contributes by 54 per cent in exports, 67pc revenue collection for the centre and 98pc for the province but no one cares about the megalopolis.”

Earlier, Gawadar Rights Movement leader and JI Balochistan general secretary Maulana Hidayat addressed the participants. He said feudal mindset existed in Sindh and Balochistan and people in both the provinces were facing black laws.

He said that Raymond Davis, Abhinandan and Kulbhushan Jadhav were respected in Pakistan but patriotic Pakistani youth, women and children were disrespected just because of the corrupt ruling elite.

He said the JI was against injustices, but supported the China-Pakistan Econo­mic Corridor (CPEC). “It was alleged that the party was against CPEC. I want to make it clear that the JI is not against any project for development and progress,” he said.

He assured the protesters that they would get their due rights if they showed their resolve and unity.

While the sit-in continues, a spokesperson for the JI said that a women workers and supporters of the party would join the sit-in on Monday (today).

Published in Dawn, January 2nd, 2022

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