Leaders of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) have demanded Dr Ishratul Ebad step down as Sindh governor because he has ‘failed to address the party’s issues’.
“If he feels the pain of the people, if he is sincere to the movement, then he should resign and become part of the movement,” Dr Farooq Sattar said on Monday in a press conference at the Khursheed Begum Secretariat.
After Ebad repeatedly failed to help the MQM, especially when party activists were arrested or killed as well as when raids were carried out on party offices and headquarters, the MQM coordination committee in both Pakistan and London agreed that Ebad should resign, said Sattar.
Last month, MQM chief Altaf Hussain had said the Sindh governor had no affiliation with or connection to the MQM, and had called him a ‘representative of the establishment’.
The MQM leaders told the media on Monday that since Ebad had the support and approval of the party chief when he was nominated for governor’s office in 2002, he should now step down because the MQM no longer supported him.
“He [Ebad] has become a silent spectator to the miseries of the MQM,” Sattar said as he voiced a list of grievances against the governor. “People poke fun at us saying that even though the governor is affiliated with the MQM, the party is still faced with all these problems.”
The MQM leader said that when Ebad had resigned from the party, it was ‘common knowledge’ that he was regarded a well-wisher of the party.
“In the beginning, Ebad performed well and abided by Altaf’s vision,” Sattar said. Bringing up 2008, Sattar said that during the PPP government, attacks were carried out in localities dominated by Urdu-speaking people and many young men were slain. “People had expectations from the governor, but he did not do anything. Those who killed our children roam around freely.”
Referring to the events of 2013, the MQM leader said the targeted operation to root out criminals in Karachi diverted from its original course and was targeting the MQM.
“In the name of operation, areas of Urdu-speaking people are being targeted, yet there is no resistance,” Sattar said. “Many discussions were held at the Governor House, yet he [Ebad] did not do anything and remains a silent spectator.”
Citing the party’s demand of constituting a monitoring committee to oversee the operation, he said the request was never entertained.
The MQM leader said the party had a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to criminals. “However, the law enforcement agencies have arrested many innocent activists and implicated them in fabricated cases.”
Published in The Express Tribune, May 12th, 2015.