KARACHI: Three more leaders of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) joined on Thursday the ranks of former mayor Mustafa Kamal and others, saying goodbye to the party they gave years to.
Shakir Ali, Naik Muhammad and Salim Tajik - former members of MQM’s top organisational body, the Rabita Committee - switched to Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) over differences with the leadership of their former party.
The new upper-tier induction into the seven-month-old PSP has come after a brief hiatus. Since its formation, the party has mostly attracted MQM leaders and workers and, in fact, was founded by two such stalwarts, Kamal and Anis Kaimkhani.
Holding a press conference at the PSP headquarters Pakistan House, party chairman Kamal welcomed the three people and said that they were those who established the MQM’s ground structure and nurtured leaders who represented the party on TV and in assemblies.
Mentioning that such a press briefing was held after a long gap, he preferred to reply to the statements given against him and his party by MQM leader Farooq Sattar.
Over the allegation that people having a criminal and corrupt background were joining PSP to save their skins from being prosecuted, he asked Sattar to give him a list of such people with him and he will not take them into the party ever.
Given the current scenario of a split in the MQM, he criticised Sattar - the head of the Pakistan faction - and asked him to part ways with Altaf Hussain completely by leaving the party that he formed and resigning from assemblies. Once again, Kamal offered Sattar to join PSP and follow him. “If you had taken this initiative [of making a different party], we would have been following you,” he said addressing Sattar. “But we did it first. So you should follow us.”
Published in The Express Tribune, October 14th, 2016.
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