Following its first power showdown in Gujranwala two days ago, the Opposition’s Pakistan Democratic Movement (PDM) has geared up again for its second show of power today in Karachi.

Hosted by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP), as it commemorates the 13th anniversary of the Karsaz blasts, today’s event will be held at the Bagh-i-Jinnah – a venue that has stood witness to many a political events of the port city, and the ensuing promises of change.

The PDM’s central leadership is expected to address the gathering. This includes JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman, PPP chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, PML-N vice president Maryam Nawaz, former prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Ahsan Iqbal, Maulana Shah Owais Noorani, Allama Sajid Mir, Dr Abdul Malik, Iftikhar Hussain, Ameer Haider Khan Hoti, Dr Jehanzeb Jamaldini, and others.

PDM president and JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman has arrived in Karachi whereas Maryam is scheduled to land in the city today. PPP’s Karachi leader Najmi Alam said that arrangements had been made to ensure 50,000 seats were present inside the venue for participants.

The momentum and festivity seems to be increasing as the hours pass with flags of prominent political parties placed inside Bagh-e-Jinnah and banners put up for the PDM’s power show.

Special arrangements for lighting and sound system have also made at the venue. Around 1,500 workers of the PPP will volunteer to regulate movement of traffic and ensure participants duly observe the anti-coronavirus precautions.

The event is scheduled to begin at 4:30 pm. Different routes have been designated for various processions of different political parties and their leaders to arrive from. PPP Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari along with Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and Sindh Education and Labour Minister Saeed Ghani visited the venue of the public meeting on Saturday night. The PPP chairman was briefed about the arrangements and preparation for the public meeting.

Lashing out at the government, Bilawal said that the PPP will organise a historic public gathering on October 18 and the PDM will continue the struggle for an independent Pakistan where the judiciary and the media are free.

Bilawal said that the selected government was unable to run the state and the economy. He said that the first public meeting of the PDM in Gujranwala had sent a clear message that the masses were not willing to let off Imran Khan easily for making people’s lives miserable.

He said that the selected prime minister had robbed the people by inflation and shortages of wheat and sugar. He said we are not looking towards the ‘Umpire’ but are witnessing the hardships of people who were robbed of their mandate and their fate was handed over to an “incompetent selected leader.”

He said the federal government is denying Sindh its due share in the NFC Award and was also denying funds for the development of Karachi. Bilawal said the “selected prime minister and his facilitators” will be held accountable for these crimes. Referring to the PIDA ordinance, he said the federal government tried to take over the islands of Sindh and Balochistan under the garb of development.

Reacting to prime minister’s remarks about judiciary, Bilawal said the prime minister thinks he can run the judiciary like his Tiger Force. People want indiscriminate justice and want to hear the verdicts against Aleema Baji and the accountability of the K Electric run by the Abraj Group which is the main sponsor of the PTI. He said we wants indiscriminate action against corruption, be it by the judiciary or the generals.

Meanwhile, Bilawal said his struggle for restoration of democracy, supremacy of the Constitution and elected Parliament, protection of basic human rights of the masses would continue despite facing threats from the “selected prime minister”.

“It is time to end the self-centered game of selectors and the selected and empower the electors (people) and the elected (people’s representatives) to save the country and its people from further havoc,” he said while paying glowing tributes to the martyrs of the ‘Karsaz Carnage’ when peoples’ rally welcoming Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto upon return from exile was bombed resulting in the martyrdom of 180 PPP workers and injuries to more than 500 others, 13 years ago in Karachi.

Bilawal said all the democratic political parties and their leadership will be gathering in Karachi today (Sunday) to pay tributes to their supreme sacrifices of laying down lives for the cause of democracy during the battle against dictatorship.

Maryam leaves for Karachi

Addressing media personnel on her way to the Lahore airport from Jati Umra, Maryam Nawaz, in reference to a question regarding Prime Minister Imran Khan’s salvo against PML-N supremo Nawaz Sharif’s speech at the Gujranwala showdown, said, “It was a speech of a person who had lost. Mian Nawaz Sharif did not even address the prime minister; he had said this ‘game’ is above you [PM Imran] and you should stay out of it”.

In response to the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf-led federal government’s dismissal of the event as a ‘failed show of power’, the PML-N vice president said, “The government is unable to see things right now, but it will all be clear to them in a few days”.

The PML-N vice president will be accompanied by Capt (retd) Safdar, party’s spokesperson Murriyam Aurangzeb and PPP central leader Qamar Zaman Kaira on the flight.

The political leaders are expected to reach Karachi at 12:45pm.

Earlier, the Sindh government spokesperson Barrister Murtaza Wahab declared that the Pakistan Democratic Movement’s rally in Karachi will be a public referendum, saying the case of 220mn Pakistanis will be fought on streets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *