Mirza’s fiery uncouthness rekindles flames of Karachi
July 22, 2011
The most poiseness, volatile and uncouth statement, ever to blow hot out of Mirza Zulfiqar’s loose canon of a tongue finally made its debut on, 13th July on the occasion of announcement of implementation of commissionerate system, police Act 1861 and land revenue bills in Sindh Province, during a dinner event hosted by ANP’s Shahi Syed, at Mardan House. This gave an easy chance to MQM to nominate ANP as abettors in the criminal endeavors, as during the televised comments, Shahi Syed was seen as leading (almost pushing) Zulfiqar Mirza to dais to make his historical blunder.
During the televised speech viewed over Nationwide networks, Zulfiqar Mirza, in his customary rancid boisterous uncouthness admitted that he had met MQM dissident leader Afaq Ahmad, not once but twice, and vowed to carry on his practice. This was in response to a question regarding his possible meeting with imprisoned Mohajjar Qaumi Movement leader Afaq Ahmad and a possible active political role of MQM. The senior Provincial minister publicly declared that he had met Afaq Ahmad, once in the very presence of Governor Sindh Ishrat-al-Abad, whence Zulfiqar Mirza had also admitted the meeting to Governor.
Zulfiqar Mirza also publicly patronized Afaq Ahmad’s hierarchy as the original successor to Mohajjar cause, and while berating the continuing wall chalking in the areas, declared that any separate Province (of Karachi) could only evolve “ over our deadbodies”. Referring to transfer of 25 prisoners to interior Sindh, he claimed to have ordered these transfers, while also announcing the arrested 25 as target killers, said that massive amount of things impounded from the arrested were being carefully scrutinized. He also publicly, and over a live speech broadcast exhorted masses of Sindh to get up against these ‘outsiders’ for the sake of their Sindhi interests and offspring, and rid of the Mohajjar community!
Within two hours of this occasional fiery, uncouth backlash Karachi and Hydrabad erupted into a flaming turmoil and worst ever destructive violence, as shops and businesses, which had remained open on the midnight of 13th July, were ordered shut. With the entire City engulfed in an aura of ghostly silence and desertion. This state of affairs carried on to Thursday, while tensions rapidly remerged /spread. Vehicles had already been restrained to ply the roads, discouraging commuters and severely hampering industrial activities, ushering in colossal damages worth Rs. 15 billion daily. Even vehicles complying with warnings to keep off the roads were nevertheless not spared while parked. One such volatile and flaming situation occurred when 13, 2-K buses parked in North Nazimabad bus stop were torched, forcing more than 100 persons, including owners of these buses out of their livelihoods in no time.
One suffering transporter, Muneer Ahmad, resident of North Nazimabad said that he received a call from a tire shop located near their bus parking that MQM activists protesting on the road were burning tires while out of nowhere 45-50 armed men appeared and started wrecking the quietly parked buses with steel batons, stones and chemically aided fires, amid quiet a security of armed terrorists. Afterwards all indulged in a free for all firing. Fire brigade if ever summoned to deal with volatile situation was not expected to arrive in time, hence all indulged in community service by resorting to self-help. Half an hour later a fire brigade vehicle did appear but it was soon discovered that there was no water in it. Meanwhile the bus stop parked more than 25 buses., out of which buses salvaged were parked in nearby safe zones.
All the torched buses had been purchased on installments by their owners, while the strangest part of all was that while community services to douse these buses with water in order to save them, were underway, police came and arrested all 14 saviors under the pretext that these people were responsible for torching of buses. And all this despite the fact that none of the arrested 14 possessed any explosive/ inflammable materials. The affected transporter understood that even police was forced to arrest innocents, since they could not have dared touch MQM miscreants. Fire brigade elements have a reason to avoid any assistance, as they rightly maintain that they lack any due protection, while transporters were also critical of the fact that police and rangers always failed to provide protection. The president of Karachi transport Itehad KTI summoned an emergency meeting of transporters, to evolve a strategy for transporters’ woes. Meanwhile roving bands of MQM miscreants roamed the City, torching vehicles, roadside bistros and hotels of Punjabi and Pakhtoon elements. 9 coaches and mini-buses, alongwith 13 2K buses were also torched on Thursday as well; while payments for more than 500 vehicles torched by miscreants have yet to settled by government. More than a dozen precious lives were lost in a short span of 17 hours, while more than 40 vehicles were also torched.
After this sacrifice of innocent blood and burning of more than half of City, at the cruel and barbarous altar of egos and power display, the demon in Mirza Zulfiqar subsided and while pacified, he finally offered his long awaited apology over his fiery uncouthness; clarifying that he had referred to certain elements having a specific point-of-view, and also stressed on reconciliation within shortest possible time. Karachites were in mood for an immediate pacifying of the situation, and planned a long march towards the home of this unrelenting uncouth minister obviously, blocked by Police. Protestor wanted immediate evacuation of Mirza from City limits within 48 hours.
However mercifully that very evening Altaf Hussain ordered immediate peace in City, after which normalcy returned as people slowly returned to their businesses. This goes way to prove that a statement should be tackled in a political way, but obviously there is no excuse for the colossal and tragic loss of lives that ensued during the whole affair.