Free polls in Karachi litmus test for ECP authority: JI

Karachi: Holding free and fair polls in Karachi would be the litmus test for independence autonomy and authority of the Election Commission of Pakistan and a test case for the future of democracy in this country, said Jamaat-e-Islami secretary general Liaqat Baloch here Tuesday.

Addressing a big moot at Jamia Millia Malir area here, he said the coming elections would be crucial to draw the future map of democracy, rule of law and supremacy of the constitution in Pakistan. He said the largest city of the country, Karachi, would hold the central focus in these polls. He said it would also be a test case to determine the fairness and authenticity of coming elections. He said all political parties have reposed confidence in the Chief Election Commissioner Justice (r) Fakhruddin G Ebrahim and it would be a huge challenge for him to keep the ballot of Karachi free from the control of bullet. He said reining in the ‘Thappa mafia’ (poll riggers) would be highly crucial to ensure that the voters of Karachi use their constitutional right of vote as per their wish. He said the correction of voter lists and delimitations in Karachi as per the order of the Supreme Court of Pakistan (SCP) would be the first step towards freeing the city from what he called a manipulated mandate.

Referring to the 137th birthday anniversary of Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, he said it is a historical fact that Pakistan was created in the name of Islam. He said at least there are 90 speeches of Quaid-e-Azam in which he had mentioned that the independence of Pakistan was linked to safeguard and promote the ideology of Islam. He said the objective resolution also categorically tells why this new country was created. He said it was the love for Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) that had compelled Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Iqbal to peruse the case of Ghazi Ilmuddin Shaheed.

He said new elections are unavoidable. He said there is an undeclared consensus amongst all patriotic political forces that the elections should not be delayed, and let the change come in Pakistan though a democratic process. He said the secular elements want to get the coming polls delayed at any cost. He said in this regard the situation in Karachi, Balochistan and Fata is being deteriorated to make a justification of polls postponement. He said if the coming election was held as per schedule it would be a big setback for the agents of foreign forces. He said the JI had waged a long struggle against dictatorships and it believes that the State should be run as per the Constitution. He reminded that his party had also played a pivotal role in the formation of the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan.

He said his party is determined to ensure the supremacy of Quran and Sunnah in Pakistan. He said we want a bright and safe future for our new generations. He said his party does not believe in political dynasties, for which party elections are held regularly from up to the bottom. He said his party wants a change in Pakistan but for this change it opts for peaceful, open and democratic means, adding it considers changing hearts and minds of people with the force of logic the basic principle of bringing this change. He said the political manifesto of JI is there to tell the nation about the revolutionary, pro-people and Islamic program of this party. He urged that all political parties should form a grand alliance to demands fair and free polls in Pakistan as per their schedule. He said the coming interim government should be impartial and Election Commission of Pakistan given full independence, autonomy and authority and all other state institutions made bound to implement it orders.

Baloch said the external forces through International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank and NGOs want to attack the ideology of Pakistan, but the patriotic forces who want to see Pakistan as an independent and respectable nation would foil these evil designs. He said the imperialist forces have targeted this region, particularly Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran and they want to make India the regional policeman. He said his party would continue to unveil the faces of the local agents of these foreign forces including their terrorists, extortionist and criminals. He said this is necessary for ensuring the safety and solidarity of the nation.

He said a firm and joint voice of Islamist forces in parliament is necessary to save Pakistan from what he called ‘American slavery’. He said in this regard they are open to form an alliance with religious parties having a clean track record, adding his party would, however, not compromise on principles to chase making of another futile alliance.

He said the prevailing system has miserably failed and Islam is the only answer to solve the problems of contemporary world. He said people all over the world are finally looking to Islam as an alternative system. He said the successes of Islamic parties in Turkey, Egypt and other countries are a clear indicator towards this phenomenon. He said such a pro-people Islamic revolution is also the fate of Pakistan. He said the law of Quran and Sunnah would ensure a just-based society in Pakistan with safeguard to the basic rights of people and solution to their day-to-day miseries.

JI Sindh Amir Dr Merajul Huda Siddiqui and other leaders also spoke.