DADU: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s leader Liaquat Ali Khan Jatoi, along with his brothers and supporters, announced on Thursday joining the Grand Democratic Alliance while reiterating that many ‘bogus’ FIRs were lodged against them though he was not afraid of fabricated cases.

The announcement came after final negotiations held between PTI delegation led by Liaquat Ali Jatoi and the GDA’s Pir Sadruddin Shah Rashidi and others at Betto Jatoi village in Mehar taluka.

Liaquat, his brothers Sadaqat Ali Jatoi, Ihsan Ali Jatoi and Zaffar Ali Jatoi, his son Karim Ali Jatoi, former Zila Nazim of Dadu; PTI leaders Sardar Ashiq Ali Zounr, Niaz Buriro, Saeed Ahmed Soomro, Syed Zaffar Ali Shah and others took part in the talks with GDA leaders Sadruddin Shah, Murtaza Jatoi, Sindh United Party chairman Syed Zain Shah, Pakistan Peoples Party-Workers chief Dr Safdar Abbasi.

Liaquat made the announcement before his supporters, who had arrived from various parts of the province

in Betto Jatoi village in response to their leader’s call, after seeking their permission.

He said in his speech that 15 years of PPP rule had deprived people of roads, paved streets, water, health facilities and schools. Several ‘bogus’ FIRs were lodged against him and his supporters but he was not afraid of cases and he would never sell his votes nor support anyone who sold peoples’ votes, he said.

He announced organising a public gathering of GDA on Dec 9 in Dadu.

Rashidi urged people to resist the elements who tried to get their votes forcibly in upcoming election. For last 30 years, he had seen infrastructure crumbling in Sindh while standard of schools and health facilities was better in Punjab because of less corruption, he said.

GDA leader Ghulam Murtaza Khan Jatoi said that his elder Ghulam Mustafa Khan Jatoi had remained loyal to PPP and supported it in difficult times but he had to leave the party in 1983 when senior party activists who were persecuted in Gen Zialul Haq’s martial law were neglected

He alleged that former president Asif Ali Zardari’s family owned some land but now he had 100,000 acres and 11 sugar mills, which he had apparently amassed through ill-gotten money.

GDA general secretary Dr Safdar Abbasi said that no one could steal election results in 2024.

The GDA would contest on all seats of MPA and MNA in Sindh and a parliamentary board would be formed to decide applications of party workers who wanted to contest elections in Sindh, he said.

He was confident GDA would win all seats in Dadu district and other districts and would be able to form next government in Sindh.

Syed Zain Shah said that the ruling party leaders had occupied agricultural land and natural resources in Sindh. Billions of rupees of funds meant for drainage projects were embezzled and as a result millions of families suffered in resulting flood, he said, adding that billions of dollars were embezzled in the name of providing facilities to flood-hit people.

Published in Dawn, December 8th, 2023

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