KARACHI: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P)’s former leader Farooq Sattar, Khawaja Izharul Hassan and Qamar Mansoor along with others appeared before the Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) on Saturday in a case pertaining to hate speech.
However, the hearing was adjourned till December 8 due to the absence of the judge. It was said that accused are booked and are expected to be indicted in five more cases.
The ATC had indicted Farooq Sattar, Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar and others in 21 cases related to hate speech in its previous hearing.
The court had confirmed the interim bail of the accused in those 21 cases.
Talking to media persons outside the court, Khawaja Izhar said that he appeared before the ATC to defend himself from false allegations levelled against him.
He also said that now witnesses have to prove these allegations against them and that there is a need to improve the country’s system and judiciary. ”There are at least 14,000 cases still pending ebfore the court,” he added.
Izhar reaffirmed Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui as the leader of MQM-P. He, however, refused to accept the decision to expel Farooq Sattar from the party. He said: “it would be very complicated if I started to offer my accountability inside the party.”
Farooq Sattar also spoke to media outside the court and said that last night, during his press conference, he presented a solution to the party crisis. He talked about certain quarters occupying the party, resulting in losses and said that the coordinating committee has failed to maintain its confidence amongst party workers due to its controversial decisions.
Sattar stressed the need of intra-party elections and said that the decision to revoke his basic membership was rejected by the workers. “Party workers will not accept such decisions and we want to run the party through political and democratic ways,” he said.
He expressed the importance of all leaders, including him, declaring the details of their assets before the party workers. ”I have already shown the details of a white land cruiser under my use,” Sattar said.
He also said that when he led the party after August 23 he was aware of what was happening within the party.
The former MQM-P leader said that Dr Khaliq Maqbool Siddiqui should talk about accountability and Prime Minister Imran Khan should also start an accountability process within his party. Sattar asserted that until accountability is not carried out, corruption cannot be eradicated from the country.
”I have nothing to do with MQM-London and after the August 22. MQM-P was separated from MQM-L,” he said, adding that minus-one happened incidentally, but ‘minus-two’ is a conspiracy. He maintained that he will restore the party position in the next general elections.