Wednesday August 17, 2022

Jamaat, ANP invited to all-party conference on local govt bill

December 07, 2021
Jamaat, ANP invited to all-party conference on local govt bill

As a part of its efforts to contact other political parties against the passage of the Sindh Local Government Bill by the provincial assembly, the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan’s (MQM-P) on Monday met the Jamaat-e-Islami and the Awami National Party (ANP) to invite them to attend the all-party conference to be held on December 11.

An MQM-P delegation comprising parliamentary leader Khawaja Izharul Haq, Kanwar Naveed Jameel, Mohammad Waseem and Iqbal Muhammad Ali visited Idara Noor-e-Haq, the JI Karachi headquarters, to invite the Jamaat leadership to an all-party conference (APC) hosted by the Muttahida over the “controversial” legislation on the LG set-up.

JI Karachi chief Hafiz Naeemur Rehman and other leaders, including Munim Zafar Khan, Usama Razi, Raja Arif Sultan and Muslim Pervez, attended to the visitors. Talking to the media after the meeting, Jameel said the MQM-P agreed with most of the JI’s viewpoints on the “controversial” bill tabled by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) in the PA.

The MQM-P leader said the APC’s invitation has been extended to the JI leadership, and it would be a matter of great happiness if the JI participates in the said conference. JI leader Rehman said the religious party will decide about the APC after consultations. “The JI and the MQM-P have an almost similar stance on the controversial bill against the interests of Karachi.”

However, he added, the JI has severe reservations over the role of the federal government, of which the MQM-P is a part, when it comes to the development, progress, maintenance and rights of the people of Karachi.

The JI leader said the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and the Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) had already approached his party in regard to the “controversial” bill. Criticising the PPP’s undemocratic attitude, he said the government even failed to keep its word and did not hand over the bill to the committee, regarding which an understanding had been developed prior to the bill being tabled. Rehman said the JI was not in favour of even the 2013 set-up of LG bodies.

He added that the JI demands an empowered LG set-up for Karachi. So, he said, when provincial minister Nasir Hussain Shah approached the JI and sought recommendations over the matter, the JI leadership made it clear that a mega city like Karachi should be run through a megacity government, with direct election of the mayor and a set-up consisting of towns and union councils.

He said the JI has been playing its role for the megalopolis, and under an ongoing campaign, the ‘Save Karachi March’ will be held on December 12. Referring to the JI’s Karachi Charter, he said the MQM is a part of the federal government and shares the responsibility to resolve the issues, including the flawed census, the K-Electric, the quota system and the matter of the Green Line bus project.

Another MQM-P delegation, which was led by the party’s parliamentary party leader in the PA Muhammad Hussain, met ANP Sindh President Shahi Syed and other party leaders to invite them to attend the APC.

Leaders of both parties agreed that the PPP’s provincial government wanted to bring a toothless LG system that could not resolve the issues of the residents of the city. Syed said a meeting with MQM-P leaders and the convening of the APC will be a milestone in resolving the city’s problems.

ANP Sindh General Secretary Younas Bunairee, Information Secretary Bahre Kamal, and MQM-P leader and former Central District Municipal Corporation chairman Rehman Hashmi were also present in the meeting.

On Sunday MQM-P leaders had met Pakistan Muslim League-Functional President Syed Sibghatullah Shah Rashidi, and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz central leader and former Sindh governor Muhammad Zubair to invite them to join the conference.