Opposition demands polls transparency, as ‘train march’ begins

Karachi: Opposition parties here Sunday demanded free and fair elections in Karachi, as their ‘train march’ started here at Cantt Station, where thousands of people thronged to see off their leaders.

Jamaat-e-Islami JI, Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz PMLN, Pakistan Muslim League functional PMLF, Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan JUP, Sind Taraqqi Pasand Party STPP, Jamiat Ulemae Islâm-Samiul Haq JUIS, Awami Muslim League and other parties participated the train march.

On the occasion a big rally was staged at the Cantt Station that was addressed by JI Sind amir Dr Merajul Huda Siddiqui, Saleem Zia of PMLN, Shahid Soomro of PMLF, Owais Noorani of JUP, Mufti Usman Yar Khan on JUIS, Mehfooz Yar Khan of Awami Muslim League, Gulzar Soomro of STPP, Bisharat Mirza of Pakistan Democratic Party and other leaders.

Dr Huda said a particular mindset in Karachi is not ready to tolerate any other political force in Karachi. He regretted that the Election Commission of Pakistan is being pressurized by this group and hence electoral lists are being manipulated. He said the nation would reject the killers and criminals. He said this train march is a caravan of peace, love and democracy. He said they want to get Karachiites rid of target killers, extortionists and criminals and to make it a city of lights again.

Saleem Zia of PMLN said the nation wants an election and not a selection. He said the corruption of the sitting rulers have broken all past records. He said lawlessness is at its zenith in Karachi and the life and property of citizens is not safe in this biggest city of Pakistan. He claimed that all past elections in Karachi were won on gunpoint. He said this malpractice would not be tolerated this time. He charged that the MQM had not got real mandate of Karachi people, adding if free and fair polls were held in the city many so-called big guns would be cut down to size.

Owais Noorani said this train march would prove to a referendum against the poll-riggers. He said they would tighten the noose around the killers and criminals of Karachi. He opined that the election commission should be loyal only to the constitution and not to some political group. He said the people of Karachi would reject the criminals and target killers through their power of vote. He said the opposition parties have joined hand to prevent hijacking of coming polls.

Shahid Soomro of PMLF said that his party has always raised voice for the people of Sind including Karachi. He said had the Jamaat-e-Islami announced a march to Islamabad on foot his party would also have joined it. He said peace in Karachi is in the interest of all Pakistanis. He said they would support the cause of Karachi and its people at all forums.

Mufti Usman Yar Khan said under a deep-rooted conspiracy Karachi is being converted into a human butcher house. He said now the enough is enough and today 22 opposition parties have joined hands to get Karachi rid of criminal mafia. He said free and fair polls are a must if the nation want to salvage the burning Karachi.

Gulzar Soomro said the train march would prove a political milestone in the history of Pakistan and it would pave way for a lasting peace in Karachi. He said there is a dire need to free this city from the clutches of criminal mafias. He said the target killers and extortionists of Karachi must be nabbed if the nation wants to revive the national economy.

Later, thousands of people saw off their leaders travelling on Allama Iqbal Express to reach Rawalpindi.