Altaf raises 14 questions to Army chiefSeptember 25, 2014
KARACHI: The Founder and Leader of Muttahida Quami Movement (MQM) Altaf Hussain on Friday put 14 questions to Chief of Army Staff General Raheel Sharif about the behavior of paramilitary forces and the army towards MQM.
In a statement, he said: “These questions echo the sentiments of Mohajir elders, mothers, daughters, youths, and even small children who suffer crude and unlawful behaviours during raids.
Hussain said, “Allah has given you an exalted and the most powerful office and I beseech you to thank Allah for this benevolence and do justice with your office. You should also bear in mind that the chiefs of army staff and heads of the ISI and the MI would not be exempted from reckoning on the Day of Judgment.”
The 14 questions are as following: Ever since the Rangers have started operation in Karachi and arrested MQM workers from different place, 41 workers have gone missing.
Bodies of those MQM workers who died as a result of inhuman torture were thrown in far flung areas, jungles and on roads. How many officers and men have been punished under the self-accountability process of the armed forces for killing MQM workers by torture?
The Supreme Court had ruled in the Karachi Lawlessness Case that political parties in Karachi, which includes Awami National Party, Sunni Tehreek, Jamat-i-Islami, Muttahida Quami Movement, Pakistan Peoples Party and other parties that have been formed in the name of religious sects, had militant wings. Why is it that only MQM leaders and workers are being targeted and subjected to raids at their offices and houses and extra-judicial killings?
The armed forces of any country are the symbol of its unity but when the army started operation in the name of taking action against the 72 big fishes on 19th June 1992, it was diverted towards the MQM alone. Why did the former Chief of Army Staff late Gen Asif Nawaz said that Altaf Hussain’s chapter is closed? Why did he say that if there could be two or three groups in other political parties, why can’t there be two or more groups in the MQM? Was it in conformity with the Constitution, law and the code of conduct of the army? If not, why did the army not punish Gen Asif Nawaz?
Brigadier Asif Haroon of the army brought journalists from Punjab and distributed them the fabricated map of Jinnahpur saying that these maps were discovered in a raid at an MQM office. Retired army officers, who can testify that this allegation was totally malicious and utter lie, are still living. If United Nations court is asked to probe it or a public court is held in the GHQ, eye-witness and former army officers can testify that it was a baseless and concocted allegation. But a guarantee should be given that the witnesses would not be victimized.
Over fifteen thousand MQM workers have been killed extra-judicially since the start of the operation against the Mohajirs and the MQM on 19th June 1992 to this date. This is continuing unstoppably. During this wave of killings my elder brother Nasir Hussain, who had served Government of Pakistan all his life and was at that time living a retired life and his son Arif Hussain, were arrested by Rangers and Police. Nasir Hussain was 70 years old and Arif Hussain was 28. Arif was also a graduate of the NED University. The household expenses were borne by the pension of Nasir Hussain which was supplemented by earnings from tuition. They were subjected to brutal torture for three days from 5th September to 6th September, 1995 and taken to the house of each of brother and sister. They were ultimately martyred in the Gadap in the outskirts of Karachi by firing. What was their fault? They were neither MQM workers nor did they belong to any other political party. Why has the army been unsuccessful in tracing their killers as of today? If the answer to this question is that it is the duty of the government and not the army, when does the government give the license to kill innocent people under political victimization?
Is it a part of the training of the army to beat women and misbehave with them during raids and arrests? Are they taught to commit excesses and use abusive language to elderly people and to tell them that they are Indian agents, Raw agency agents, descendants of Rajiv and Gandhi? Considering the fact that the army of any country is a symbol of unity for that country, is it the part of the duty of the armed forces to divide the nation along linguistic and provincial lines?
The list of injustices committed is very long. I can state them all but your institution would not care to read it. I had asked the army officers who met me to return the videos, audio tapes, photographs and literature of the MQM that was confiscated during the operation in raids at the houses of MQM workers. These videos, audio tapes, photographs and literature were stored by workers at their homes and other places for safety but they were tortured into disclosing each and everything. Thousands of videos, audio tapes and photographs were confiscated. I had requested them to return it after making copies if they wanted because it was a historical asset for the party. Why is it that that nothing has been returned so far?
Although there are thousands of painful things but the army may not have the time to read each and everything. The MQM was the only political party that came out in support when the army decided to take action against the terrorists who had attacked GHQ, Kamra Base, Mehran Base in Karachi, ISI buildings and attacked and killed generals and officers of the army. These terrorists’ had attacked army convoys, children schools, mosques, imam bargahs, and shrines of saints. The MQM hid its tears, grief and wounds but come out to pay a glowing tribute to the armed forces. No other party worth the name had the courage to take out even a small rally consisting of one million people in support of the army. I (Altaf Hussain) always offered to give one hundred thousand workers to support the army for national security. No other leader worth the name could make such an offer.
Recently people belonging to certain political parties holding sit-ins in Islamabad stormed the building of Pakistan Television. The miscreants vandalized the building and took away with them cameras but no one from the Rangers could muster the courage to step forward and stop them. Why?
When the Rangers were carrying out a raid in Scheme 33 in Karachi, MQM MPA Syed Faisal Sabzwari and other party office-bearers arrived there. The entire area was cordoned off. Faisal Sabzwari and others came out of their car and introduced himself that they were elected representative and wanted to meet some responsible official of the Rangers. A sepoy approached them and told them stay where they were as they could not go forward. Faisal Sabzwari said that he wanted to meet the Rangers major but he was told that he could not meet him. He was told that it would be better for him to leave and that gentle fellow came back. Do Brigadiers, Majors and Captains of the Rangers have more dignity according to the Constitution than the elected representatives?
Chief of Army Staff Gen Raheel Sharif, you, the corps commanders and other heads of the armed forces should know that our forefathers had made this country. They immigrated to Pakistan. We were born here but we are still reviled as Indian agents and RAW’s agents by officers and sepoys of the army and paramilitary Rangers. The army should finally tell us Mohajirs as to what we should do. Why could we not be acceptable to the army despite the fact that we nurture the sentiments sacrifice everything for the army? Why could such hateful feelings not completely come out from the hearts of people in the army? Not every soldier is like this but one black sheep spoils the entire flock.
It has been more than 40 days now but some parties have the permission to go in the Red Zone and carry out their sit-ins.
If the MQM announces to carry out a sit-in in Islamabad after one week I hope the army, rangers and police will not take action.
What I have written echoes the sentiments of every Mohajir including the elderly, mothers, sisters, youths and even small children developed as a result of the negative behaviour suffered during raids. I shall wait for your answer.