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KARACHI, Jan 19: MQM legislators on Thursday praised their leader Altaf Hussain’s cardinal and courageous role that led to the decision of building the Bhasha and Munda dams instead of the Kalabagh Dam, and slammed the ‘so-called Sindhi nationalists’ and certain other political parties for their ‘propaganda to mislead people.’

Senator Mohammad Ali Brohi, along with MNAs Nisar Panhwar and Devdas, MPAs Heer Soho, Farida Baloch and Panjomal Bheel, and Adviser Ashfaq Mangi, told a news conference at the Karachi Press Club Thursday that he was also grateful to the president and prime minister for taking the decision in accordance with the aspirations of the people.

He said the decision had nullified the propaganda by those parties which, he alleged, had compromised on Sindh’s genuine interests. He vowed to frustrate all such designs.

Mr Brohi claimed that the so-called nationalists in Sindh had exploited the longstanding issues like Kalabagh Dam, NFC Award, Greater Thal Canal, etc., at the cost of people’s rights and aspirations. These elements, he added, had never acted in the interest of people.

He said that the PPP had remained in power for three stints but instead of protecting people’s rights and aspirations, it always sided with the Establishment.

He claimed that the PPP had allocated sufficient funds for the Kalabagh Dam project and after strong protest, it had tried to change its name as ‘Indus Dam’.

Senator Brohi pointed out that Gen Musharraf had announced to build the KBD, but MQM took a stand against it and asked the government to give up the controversial project. Even, the MQM gave it an ultimatum that it might quit the government by Jan 14 if the government continued with its KBD plan and Balochistan operation.

He said that the MQM strategy worked as the government decided to go for the Bhasha Dam instead of the KBD which, he said, was the victory of Mr Hussain’s principled stand.

Opponents of the MQM have now realized that their tactics of using the ‘Sindh card’ had failed.