ISLAMABAD: Federal Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan on Wednesday hailed the early morning raid by Rangers on MQM headquarters as a step in the positive direction,
Meanwhile, leader of the House in the Senate Raja Muhammad Zafarul Haq strongly rejected the allegation of Muttahida Qaumi Movement that the ruling Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) was behind the raid at its head office in Karachi.
“This allegation is totally wrong and baseless. I strongly and categorically reject it,” he said speaking in the Senate in response to an MQM Senator who had accused the ruling party of taking action at the party’s head office (Nine Zero).
He said the assertion that the action was carried out because the MQM did not support the ruling party for the election of top Senate slots, was totally baseless.
Raja Zafarul Haq said if Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif could visit the residence of former President Asif Ali Zardari to support Raza Rabbani as a consensus candidate for the Senate chairmanship, then there was no question of him working against the MQM.
He said under the laid down procedure, the chief ministers concerned were acting as captains in the fight against terrorism and extremism. Any information received by the departments regarding terrorists or extremists was passed on to security agencies for an action, he added.
He assured that he would contact the Sindh Chief Minister and present the details in the House.
Meanwhile, the MQM Senators staged a walkout from the House to protest the early morning raid at the party head office. Speaking on a point of order, they called for constitution of a monitoring committee to oversee the actions being taken by law enforcement agencies.
Senator Tahir Hussain Mashhadi alleged that over 100 MQM workers have been arrested. “The Karachi operation should not be politicised. The law enforcers should concentrate on apprehending target killers, extortionists and members of proscribed organisations,” he added.
Dr Qayyum Soomro of Pakistan People’s Party said the criminal elements should be apprehended in collaboration with political parties.
Farhatullah Babar of PPP said a human rights committee or special sub-committee should be constituted to probe allegations against law enforcement agencies.
Nasreen Jalil of MQM said transparency should be ensured in the ongoingoperation in Karachi. Shahi Sayed of Awami National Party said a political party should not dump weapons in its offices. “Terrorists irrespective of their political affiliations must be nabbed and punished. Political parties should purge themselves of criminal elements,” he added. Maulana Tanveer-ul-Haq Thanvi said congenial atmosphere must be kept intact.
Baber Ghouri of MQM said terrorists belonging to any political party must be nabbed. He urged the government to probe alleged excesses being committed against the MQM. Senator Sherala Malik criticised the raid at MQM’s headquarter.
Senator Abdul Rauf said Karachi had virtually been made a “no-go area” for other parties. “Karachi belongs to every community and the mindset that Karachi is ‘ours’ should be changed,” he added. All stakeholders should be taken into confidence for making Karachi a peaceful city, said Rauf.
Federal Minister for Climate Change Mushahidullah Khan said that Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz PML-N believed in policy of reconciliation and dialogue.
Commenting on the raid at MQM headquarters, he said that it was a provincial matter and Sindh chief minister has already sought a report of the issue.
Mushahidullah said according to Rangers officials, foreign made arms and ammunition were recovered during the operation at MQM headquarters.