The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) and the Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) have rejected the results of the census carried out earlier this year, describing them as ‘fake’.
Speaking at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday, the MQM-P leader Dr Farooq Sattar said injustice with Karachi was tantamount to meting out injustice to the entire country.
He added that the census results were not only alarming for the MQM-P but for every person living in Sindh. “The province’s population has deliberately been shown less than what it actually is,” he claimed.
“The people living in Sindh are being treated as second-class citizens,” the MQM-P leader maintained. “They are being denied their legal and financial rights.”
Reiterating that Mohajirs were being pushed against the wall, Sattar said his party would approach the Supreme Court against the “misrepresented” census results.
The PSP too rejected the results, describing them as a ‘major administrative negligence’.
“People across Pakistan – from Karachi to Wana – have rejected the results, PSP leader Advocate Anis Khan said at a press conference at the party’s headquarters on Tuesday.
He quoted the World Bank and the World Health Organisation’s estimates which place Karachi’s population at around 23 million against the figure of 14.9 million in the new census.
“Leaving out 10 million people in the census is tantamount to depriving Sindhis, Balochs, Punjabis, Pashtuns, Mohajirs and all people of all other ethnicities living in this city of their rights,” he added.
He said all over the world people moved to urban centers from rural areas but the census results indicate the opposite.
“The population of Karachi [according to the census results] increased only 63 per cent in the previous 19 years while that of Lahore dramatically soared by 116 per cent. This is incomprehensible,” he remarked..
He urged the military to take into consideration the reservations expressed by the people of Karachi, FATA and Balochistan on the census results and also requested political parties to urgently deal with this matter.
On Monday, the Pakistan People’s Party, the ruling party in Sindh, had also rejected the census results. In a policy statement, the Sindh government announced that it would convene an all parties conference on the issue.
Parliamentary Minister Nisar Ahmed Khuhro, in the statement, said a conspiracy was hatched by the federal government to show that the population of Sindh was less what it really was. “This aims at reducing Sindh’s share in the National Finance Commission as well as national and provincial assembly seats and job quota in federal government services,” he said, adding that the PPP government in Sindh will not accept this conspiracy.
Earlier, nationalist parties in Sindh too had claimed that the province’s population had deliberately been shown less to gain political mileage.