By Akhtar Malik

27 July 2013

1003483_687225897958828_1052467147_nIn an unprecedented move PML-N delegation went to MQM center 90 and requested for MQM votes in favor their presidential candidate Mamnoon Hussain. MQM announced unconditional support to PML-N. The ruling party has also offered MQM to join the government in center.

This development has come as a surprise to many. To me this is the biggest political tragedy that has happened to the nation within just two months of the change of government.

PML-N had no compulsion of entering into alliance with MQM. The number game is clearly in favor of PML-N, both at government and presidential level. PPP has this compulsion hence they had to oblige MQM at the peril of Karachi and Pakistan. It was PML-N who had been the most aggressive critique of MQM, its politics of violence and its alliance with PPP. Even while framing Charter of Democracy, PML-N had placed the condition that no party will ever make alliance with MQM. Doing exactly the same thing after coming to power by the PML-N is not understandable.

Elections 2013, whatever their status regarding the allegations of rigging be, had given a golden opportunity whereby MQM was deprived of its nuisance value of political blackmail. At the federal level PML-N was having a comfortable majority and in Sindh PPP could make government without MQM. But unfortunately this opportunity has been smashed by the wrong initiative taken by PML-N.

The support of MQM to PML-N will never be unconditional. It will have its many tags attached to it as usual. May be that their governor in Sindh is being retained? May be that legal cooperation of Pakistan government with British police in Imran Farooq murder case will be blocked? May be that MQM is again given a free hand to play with the life and property of citizens in Karachi and to protect its criminal gangs from prosecution? And all this at what cost? Just few votes for the presidential candidate who could otherwise make to his office?

PML-N will have to give full justification of their U-turn in policy to their supporters and voters, who have entrusted them with power to see a meaningful change in Karachi situation. It is feared that we are heading towards another round of bloodshed, lawlessness, and destruction in Karachi. Najam Sethi has termed this move as ‘excellent political strategy’ on the part of MQM and PML-N. If this is excellent strategy then what was the notorious policy of ‘reconciliation’ of PPP? If such strategies are considered admirable then any ruler of the country will be justified to join hands with the criminals, decoits, looters, smugglers, exploiters, terrorists, kidnapper, murderers and miscreants to keep them happy. Those elements will be more than satisfied to enter into alliance with the government to enjoy protection of the state and will play havoc with the lives and properties of people with impunity.

PM Mian Nawaz Shareef will be expected to satisfy the people of Pakistan on this crucial policy matter.

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