KARACHI: A senior leader of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan has said his party will eventually leave the Pakistan Democratic Movement-led coalition government at the Centre if its grievances over the ongoing digital census are not addressed.

“In the first phase, we will leave federal ministries and then part ways with the government, if the issue of this flawed census is not addressed,” said senior MQM-P leader Khawaja Izharul Hasan.

He said this while speaking at an Iftar dinner organised by his party for the people of Lyari on Sunday.

Earlier this month, Khawaja Izhar said that he personally believed that his party should take its own path if the federal government would not accept its demands regarding population count. “Census is our red line and this red line is being crossed,” he had said.

He said that the MQM-P was blamed for backstabbing Imran Khan’s government at the Centre. He said that the former prime minister did nothing for Karachi during his tenure and instead of giving his promised 10 million jobs, he sacked 900 Karachiites from the Pakistan Steel Mills.

Khawaja Izhar said that the MQM-P was also blamed for staying in the coalition government despite injustices with Karachi. “We are playing an important role in rectifying peoples’ problems only because we are in the government,” he said.

He said that his party had launched a campaign for an empowered local government system and it boycotted the Jan 15 local government elections only to register its protest over flawed delimitation.

Published in Dawn, April 17th, 2023

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