KARACHI: The accusations of “criticising the new ordinance without reading it” has not gone down well with Jeay Sindh Tehreek’s (JST) President Dr Safdar Sarki, who has counter challenged the members of the ruling coalition for a debate on the new law.
For the past few weeks, members of the Pakistan Peoples Party and Muttahida Qaumi Movement have been calling out that nationalists have not even read the Sindh Peoples Local Government Ordinance (SPLGO) and are just politicising the issue.
“We are not illiterate and ignorant. We have read the SPLGO and are ready for a debate,” said Dr Safdar Sarki at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday. “We’ll not remain silent and will fight for our rights.” At the press conference, the nationalist leader and his party members slammed the controversial bill passed by the Sindh Assembly on October 1. “It is the same date when 450 Sindhis were killed in 1988,” Sarki said. “This is another war on the integrity of Sindh and its people.” He said that Sindh has been divided administratively with the enforcement of the new local government law. “The PPP and the MQM are trying to create rifts between the Sindhis and the Urdu-speaking people.”
He appealed to the Urdu poets, intellectuals, journalists, doctors and engineers to support the nationalist parties’ struggle against the new law. “Three generations of Urdu-speaking people are buried in Sindh. They need to understand who is their foe and friend,” the JST chief said.
The party will organise rallies and sit-ins across the province today (Wednesday) against the killing of its activist in Nawabshah during riots on Monday. The party’s president said that three more party activists were in a serious condition.
The JST will also arrange a protest march in Karachi on October 14 against the new system of local governance, Dr Sarki announced, appealing to the Pakistan Muslim League-Functional chief Pir Pagara and other nationalist parties to join the march. On November 3, the JST chief will lead a long march from Jacobabad to Karachi in its struggle against the new ordinance. “Thousands of people will come to the city here and compel the rulers to withdraw the bill,” he claimed.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 3rd, 2012.