Afaq Ahmed is a fiery orator - and has proved that he can express his outrage in writing too. In a six-page hand-written representation to the Sindh High Court on Friday, he challenged his detention order while assuring the court that he would remain peaceful and abide by the law if released.
He informed the court that he had rejected all offers extended by additional home secretary, Waseem Ahmed, on behalf of the Sindh government. These offers included the one to leave Karachi and live elsewhere. He said that in fact Altaf Hussain wanted to turn Karachi into a ‘state within state’ where only his order would prevail. “He (Altaf) wants to eliminate those who dare to have a difference of opinion with him and this order of detention was passed only to serve his interests and nothing else,” Ahmed wrote.
He alleged that the MQM has turned areas it controls into ‘no-go areas’ for political rivals by fixing barricades, and that its workers are armed and have established their own check posts.
Throwing a challenge to the courts, Ahmed said that “it is to be decided that whether Altaf Hussain’s whims and wishes should prevail or the country’s law and constitution” and lamented that “instead of doing their duty by implementing the orders of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (for removing barricades and ending no-go areas) they are mocking the constitution and trying to appease Altaf Hussain”.
Afaq Ahmed has also contested the use of the word “clashes” to describe fights between the two MQMs. According to Ahmed, he has repeatedly stated that his workers were attacked, targeted and killed but they never clashed with the rival group.
Vehemently rejecting allegations of involvement in unlawful and criminal activities, Ahmed said that he was arrested and tried in seven cases and no evidence was produced against him while his rivals including Altaf Hussain and other Muttahida leaders are still facing dozens of cases, which were closed under the National Reconciliation Ordinance and re-opened on the apex court’s orders.
“If I was being detained, arrested and sent up to stand trial why are these persons not being arrested by law enforcing authorities?”, he said. Ahmed has also assured that once his workers “return to their house, they will be absolutely unarmed and would live a peaceful life.”
Published in The Express Tribune, December 17th, 2011.
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