Shared vision: Govt’s key ally to join Dr Qadri’s long march

Thousands of MQM workers will participate in Jan 14 rally: Farooq Sattar .

Our Correspondent December 30, 2012
“We want a system where the country is not just governed by a few elite families, but by the middle-class,” says Sattar. PHOTO: AFP/FILE

KARACHI: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM), the key coalition partner in the Pakistan Peoples Party-led government, decided on Sunday to attend the “million-man” march of Dr Tahirul Qadri, the founder of the Minhaj-ul-Quran International (MQI) on January 14 in Islamabad.

“To help the country get rid of corruption, injustice and feudalism, the MQM will participate in the long march along with Tahirul Qadri and his party Minhajul Quran,” Deputy Convener of the MQM Coordination Committee Dr Farooq Sattar told an emergency press briefing at the party headquarters Nine Zero in Karachi. Thousands of MQM workers would participate in MQI’s rally, he added.

“We want a system which gives political and socio-economic rights to the poor. We want a system where the country is not just governed by a few elite families, but by the middle-class,” Dr Sattar said, adding that Dr Qadri’s goal was one that MQM chief Altaf Hussain had been struggling for years to achieve.

“We have been fighting to bring a revolution where the poor are not deprived of their rights. But our efforts were crushed and thousands of our workers ended up losing their lives,” he said.

Dr Sattar went on to add that the decision to participate in the “long march” was taken after a joint meeting of the Coordination Committee in both London and Karachi. “We hope the march will strengthen our movement for a country where justice prevails, and where menaces such as corruption are eliminated,” he said and appealed to party activists to participate in the long march.

Syed Khursheed Shah

Soon after the MQM announcement, Dr Qadri called up Altaf Hussain.  He said that he would personally visit Nine Zero to thank the party for its support to the long march. The MQM chief assured Dr Qadri of his full cooperation for bringing a change in the country. Hussain said time to bring a change in the country has come.

Khurshid Shah’s take

Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Khursheed Shah said that the government would not stop Dr Qadri from organising the “million-man” march to the capital, and that the MQI leader is free to fulfil his wishes. Talking to the media in Peshawar after offering condolences to Ghulam Ahmed Bilour on the death of his brother, Khursheed Shah said the masses would decide the fate of the “long march”.

(With additional reporting by our correspondent in Peshawar)

Published in The Express Tribune, December 31st, 2012.


Amjad | 10 years ago | Reply

Please make sure you go to Islamabad, we want you to do some exercise so that Oxygen starts getting into your lungs and then to your brains!!!

FN | 10 years ago | Reply

What logic is this? Stay as a part of the govt for 5 years, reap the benefits and when elections are near protest against it while still being a part of the very system.

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