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January 10, 2018

MQM lawmakers fail to serve their constituencies


Wed, Jan 10, 2018

KARACHI: Undoubtedly, since 1987, MQM has remained main political party to grab most seats and support in the financial hub which is the life line of the country, but the fate of the Muttahida Qaumi Movement in Karachi’s politics is uncertain due to unsatisfactory performance of its representatives who mostly fail to serve the voters at their constituencies.

In 2013 General Elections, Karachiites elected their representatives and sent them in power corridors, with the hope that they would work to benefit the people of their constituencies, Ironically, as many as six of Muttehida Qoumi Movement Pakistan’s Parliamentarians failed to do justice with their jobs.

Five members of Provincial Assembly including one member from National Assembly have been out of town for couple of years. Their party says they are abroad and on leaves. However, voters continue to wait for their representatives who have not been seen after August 2016 episode dented MQM's politics.

Their departures began after MQM came under hard waters. Two raids on MQM HQs (Nine Zero) in 2015 proved game changer in the politics of the port city that led to the arrests of main figures of the party included Amir Khan, Kaif ul Wara, Qamar Mansor and dozens of workers, sending waves of insecurity to many MQM influential members.

The wind turned into storm when founder MQM chanted anti Pakistan slogan on August 2016. His incendiary speech against the military establishment changed everything, the party split into two factions. Since then the dominos continued falling and birds never returned to the nest.

1. Sufiyan Yousaf from NA 247

Residents of Khamosh Coloney are “Khamosh” (silent) regarding whereabouts of the representative they sent in assembly via votes to bring prosperity in their constituency. 

“There were huge celebrations all around, and riders accelerated motorbikes with swaying party flags when the result was announced,” said Kazim, resident of Rizvia Society. “We were equally happy because of the belief that our voice will be heard in assemblies now. Our issues will be resolved.”

Right after founder MQM’s anti Pakistan speech in his audio address in Hunger Strike Camp at Karachi Press Club, he asked all parliamentarians to step down. Sufiyan Yousaf was the first to announce his resignation. In his tweet, member national assembly reiterated his loyalties with Leader-in- London and announced his resignation following his chief’s instruction.

Sufiyan Yousaf is reportedly in London these days and has clearly parted ways with MQM in Pakistan. However, his constituency NA 247 stood helpless. It has almost been one and a half year since his tweet and sudden flight.

2. Adil Siddiqui from PS 100

It was after Nine Zero raid that Adil Siddiqui, elected from PS 100, started feeling apprehensive, due to which he could do nothing to benefit his constituency. He was considered to be amongst strongest figures in Karachi. He played vital in organizational setup of MQM.

Adil is spending his days in UAE nowadays. Sources say he fears his arrest on his arrival to Pakistan.

3. Adnan Ahmed from PS118

Adnan Ahmed was elected from PS 118 on MQM’s ticket. He left the country in 2015 after Nine Zero raid. He is reportedly in UK these days, in his absence his constituency stands unrepresentative.

4. Khalid Iftikhar from PS 112

PS 122 of Landhi has always been a constituency, where skirmishes between MQM and MQM Haqiqi were witnessed in the area. Khalid Iftikhar won provincial seat from Landhi and remained active till Local Bodies elections. Finally he had to depart for United States in 2016 after 22th Aug episode. He has no definite plans for coming back to his constituency which has many issues to be solved.

5. Muhammad Hussain from PS 95

Muhammad Hussain maintained to be in MQM Pakistan’s camp even after parting ways with founder MQM. He won PS 95 seat. Sources say despite being in MQM-P camp he was accused of having connections with MQM London officials. Once quite vocal on the floor of assembly, Muhammad Hussain was sidelined in his party due to his differences with leadership. In 2017, he asked for ex-Pakistan leaves and landed in USA.

6. Khalid bin Vilayat from PS 105

Elected on PS 105, Khalid bin Vilayat left the country right after nine zero raid. He is dwelling in Australia. Despite many reminders from his mother party, he did not pay the heed to appear in assembly to represent his constituency.

Sources confirm that he has shifted his inclinations to Pak Sarzameen Party from Muttehida Qoumi Movement (MQM).

Voices are heard inside party to get things done those locally elected now off shore representatives. Recently, MQM Pakistan submitted a reference to Election Commission of Pakistan, asking ECP to de-seat the representatives who have crossed the floor. But no MPA on ex-Pakistan leaves was named in the list. Those who are mentioned in this story are only those leaving abroad. Not those who have quit attending assembly sessions and prefer to remain inactive to reasons unknown.