Pakistan People’s Party Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari on Saturday said that the residents of Karachi will not accept another MQM founder Altaf Hussain in the shape of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan.
Addressing a party rally at Bagh-e-Jinnah here, he said the local leadership of PTI attempted to disrupt peace of the city when resorted to violence earlier this week, adding that they pelted stones and their security guards opened fire on the PPP workers.
The parties clashed over the venue of their May 12 rallies, both wanting to claim Hakim Said Ground as their own. After the violence, leaders of both parties decided to hold their events at different venues.
In today’s rally, Bilawal said the PTI chief tried to sell the ‘Naya Pakistan’ narrative, but couldn’t even build a single government university or hospital in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa despite ruling the province for five years.
People of Karachi must stand up for their rights and future, said the PPP chairman. “You have leaders, resources, and the will to achieve your objectives,” he added.
The PPP chairman slammed the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan for running a defamation campaign against his party for decades.
“You were told that PPP is your enemy because of the quota system, which was in reality introduced by the country’s first prime minister … PPP and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto had nothing to do with the quota system,” he said and urged the Karachiites to not listen to the MQM as they “lie to you under the guise of ethnic politics.”
Bilawal blamed Mayor Karachi Wasim Akhtar for May 12 carnage in the metropolis.
On May 12, 2007, at least 27 people were killed and over 140 injured after a major portion of Shahrah-e-Faisal turned into a battlefield as opposing political groups clashed with one another after the arrival of former Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry to Karachi.
“The man who is now Mayor Karachi was Home Minister at that time, he is the one responsible behind the carnage on that day,” he said.
Bilawal said that even the MQM-P leader Farooq Sattar has alleged that Mayor Karachi is involved in financial embezzlement.
“If Karachi is not getting water and its streets have trash all over, its the MQM which is responsible for it, not PPP. We gave billions to the Karachi Municipal Corporation but the Mayor embezzled the funds,” he said. The PPP leader said that the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf and Muttahida Qaumi Movement were two sides of the same coin.
Bilawal said that on May 12, the dictator of the time was laughing while the people of Karachi were picking up bodies. “PPP workers were attacked in Karachi on May 12. Awami National Party activists, lawyers of the city were killed. The people of Karachi were praying for their life,” he said. They were praying for life from a political party’s militant wing.” Taking further jibes at the MQM-P, the PPP leader said that soon after the party’s Liaquatabad rally all of MQM-P’s factions got united.
“Had I known MQM-P would unite, I would’ve held the rally way before,” he said.
“Why K-4 projects were not initiated during the Musharraf’s tenure when MQM had complete hold of the city,” he said. The PPP leader said that the Pakistan Muslim League-N’s federal government considers itself to be the government of only Islamabad as it has a discriminatory attitude towards Karachi and Sindh.