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MQM dismisses Rao Anwar’s allegations as ‘serious’ and ‘ridiculous’

MQM dismisses Rao Anwar’s allegations as ‘serious’ and ‘ridiculous’

KARACHI: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement rubbished on Thursday the ‘serious but ridiculous’ allegations levelled against the party by a senior police officer, questioned how a superintendent of police could declare a mainstream political party ‘anti-state’. It said it suspected that the fresh onslaught questioning the MQM’s patriotism might have been cooked up in the closet of Sindh’s chief minister’s house.

“The fresh allegations against the MQM are not so fresh. They are part of the same rotten script which has been dramatised several times in the past to malign our party and our leadership, but each time the directors of the drama had to bite the dust and they are destined to do the same this time round,” said Haider Abbas Rizvi, MQM’s senior leader at a press conference at the party’s headquarters in Azizabad.

He said the MQM had been wrongly blamed for being separatists and killing several high-profile personalities and for which hundreds of MQM workers and leaders had been detained, tortured and many of them had been killed, but none of ‘a single allegation’ had been proved.

“These are baseless and manufactured allegations against us and in actual terms they are political allegations,” said Mr Rizvi.

He kept his voice down and advised the journalists sitting in front of him to investigate a meeting held at the Chief Minister’s House the previous night which would give them an idea why the MQM had again been maligned in so ‘rough and ready’ manner.

“As far as I know former president Asif Ali Zardari and Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah were in that meeting, but there was a third and very important personality who attended the meeting. His name has not yet been confirmed,” said Mr Rizvi.

He said the MQM revalidated its mandate when it registered a resounding win in the NA-246 by-election, which showed it enjoyed a huge support. He added the MQM raised voice for public grievances and picked a popular demand for new provinces in the country and those were the functions that the MQM meant to serve the people.

“And, for that purpose, we also got our own leader of the opposition in the Sindh Assembly,” he said.

He said the authorities were trying the MQM on the same allegations that had already been rejected by the courts, authorities themselves and the people of Pakistan.

“How a junior police officer whose own reputation is dubious could issue certificates of patriotism to the political parties as popular and big as the MQM,” he said.

He said allegations of such a serious nature in which the party and its leadership had been put under the sword of anti-state activities were equally serious and hilarious.

“We are sons of the founders of Pakistan who could never dream such dirty dreams that we have been blamed of playing,” he added.

He said the people of Pakistan should take such allegations against a popular party seriously and find out ‘who is the real beneficiary of all this commotion’.

He said MQM’s activist Tahir Rehan, who was claimed to have been arrested on Wednesday night, had actually been picked up on February 26 because his wife had filed a petition against his detention in the Sindh High Court the following day.

Similarly, Mohammad Junaid, another MQM worker who was accused of having been trained by the Indian intelligence agencies, had been picked up on March 24, instead of on Wednesday night, which was clear from another petition filed by his family in the Sindh High Court on March 28.

He said such allegations could create chaos in Sindh and, therefore, should be investigated by the provincial government which also should clarify first whether a police officer of SP rank could do all that on his own and, most importantly, to find out who encouraged Rao Anwar to stage such a thriller based on a poor script.

MQM’s senior lawmaker Dr Farooq Sattar said the party would use all means to challenge the allegations in the courts.

Published in Dawn, May 1st, 2015

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