Monday, August 22, 2011

Peace in Karachi & Jang Group's Swinging Pendulum.

Both General Ziaul Haq and General Musharraf, for different reasons, facilitated the rise of the MQM into a greatly robust party. It also permitted the MQM to use an almost fascist ideological and operational methodology to establish itself as the prime voice in Karachi - Does it have anything to do with Karachi’s avatar? We are aware of how and when Karachi as a fishing village was first founded, and then its march with times to its present status as the only metropolis in Pakistan. But where did it go wrong? Not in its serene but playful presence as a destination of choice between Europe and Asia. Nor, one hopes, in its free spirit as the only city of lights in Pakistan till lights went out from every home under the current regimen of managed power outages, including in Karachi. It is now a city of ghastly shadows and ghoulish killing. Where once cabarets ruled, now drips blood. And the perpetrators are its own. For too long the Karachiites have blamed outsiders for their pernicious fate, never for a moment recalling that the city was the first to open its arms to outsiders, including all those who today lay exclusive claims to it. Since it has earned the sobriquet of the ‘Muhajir city’ and hence home to the erstwhile Muhajir Qaumi Movement (MQM), now changed to the Muttahida Qaumi Movement. Alongside, it is the largest Pakhtun city in Pakistan — around three million inhabit Karachi, all Muhajirs; but they are not alone to make this cosmopolitan base their home — some 17 percent of Karachi’s estimated 20 million population could be Punjabis, Muhajirs all; those categorised from Sindh, of which Karachi is the capital, number around 17 percent, almost same as the Pashtuns and the Punjabis. Around 48 percent are the Urdu speaking inhabitants of Karachi. All in all, around 25 percent of Karachi’s population is made up of migrants who made Karachi their home at various times. What remains surprising is the diminishing number of Sindhis who have gradually chosen to migrate out of Karachi ever since the Urdu speaking Muhajir phenomenon took hold of Karachi’s socio-political culture. REFERENCE: COMMENT: Karachi’s karma —Shahzad Chaudhry Monday, August 08, 2011\08\08\story_8-8-2011_pg3_2 

capital talk - 22nd aug 2011 - p1


Monday, August 22, 2011, Ramzan Al Mubarak 21, 1432 A.H Updated at: 1750   |    

KARACHI: President Pakistan Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Asma Jehangir has alleged that everyone was well aware of the fact that Pakistan People's Party's Aman Committee is actually its extortion-collecting wing, Geo News reported. Addressing lawyers at a meeting of Sindh High Court Bar Association (SHCBA), Asma Jehangir mocked that allocation should also be made in annual budget for the extortion mafia so that people could be spared. "Get ready to stage a sit-in," she asked the lawyers, promising, she would join the sit-down no matter how tense the situation gets that day. The SCBA President said it appears as if there was no presence of law in the city while the "Rangers are present in the city only to occupy schools and colleges". She said the situation was worsening every passing day and that it would itself invite the army to take control. To a question she said people knew very well as to which elements were responsible for disrupting the peace of Karachi. REFERENCE: Asma terms Aman Committee as PPP extortion wing Updated 3 hours ago 

Karachi was not the only city to which Muslims of India migrated to at partition. In most cities, Lahore and Faisalabad chief among those, including their neighbouring districts, the integration over time has been seamless to the point that today it is rare for a migrant to invoke his Muhajir status or indeed feel the need to exercise exclusivity of ethnicity. There have been underlying complicit factors that have made Muhajir sensitivities rather acute in Karachi: the language-based riots became the first manifestation when Zulfikar Ali Bhutto decided to allocate preferential quotas to Sindhis in job allocations at the federal and provincial levels. A brilliant politician became a victim of his deep-held socio-political beliefs; he went on to nationalise practically every industry save a few, and education, to set decay in each of these areas; education has still not recovered from the bureaucratic stranglehold set on it by such policy initiatives and remains the single most factor of social decay that stares Pakistan in the face. Altaf Hussain, fearing for loss of job opportunities to the Urdu speaking Muhajirs, who were always relatively better educated and more suave than an average rural Pakistani, especially in Sindh, set up a student organisation to agitate an expected denial through discretionary preference on ethnic basis. The quota-system remains, after the plight of education, Pakistan’s next most self-defeating policy step in inhibiting progress. The culture of systemic patronage has eaten at the roots of developing Pakistan’s intellectual capacity to confront 21st century challenges. As a consequence, Pakistan continues to roil in its 19th and 20th century mindsets, both feudal and organisational. A competing influence to the fledgling Muhajir awareness was the pervasive Islamist influence in Karachi’s middle-class, the larger social segment, but of a rather benign, intellectual strain of Maududi’s Jamaat-e-Islami. The urban Karachiite was the quintessential trader and shopkeeper whose moral datum lay in conservative social living and an overwhelming religious association. He contributed profusely to religious causes and to the Jamaat, in his mind keeping him on the right of the Creator. The Jamaat, too, remained sanguine under a very exclusive domain with never the need to impose religion on those of the liberal strain who made Karachi by night. This is when the city celebrated its most peaceful years. To wean the Karachi middle-class away from the Jamaat’s hold became the priority objective for the gradually evolving All Pakistan Muhajir Student Organisation (APMSO) of Altaf Hussain. As a consequence, the Jamaat is all but lost in the contemporary Karachi maze with parallel religious structures in the shape of the more hardened Deobandi and Barelvi outfits finding space, though this remains the sideshow of the main exposition in Karachi today. REFERENCE: COMMENT: Karachi’s karma —Shahzad Chaudhry Monday, August 08, 2011\08\08\story_8-8-2011_pg3_2 

capital talk - 22nd aug 2011 - p2


Monday, August 22, 2011, Ramzan Al Mubarak 21, 1432 A.H

Both General Ziaul Haq and General Musharraf, for different reasons, facilitated the rise of the MQM into a greatly robust party. It also permitted the MQM to use an almost fascist ideological and operational methodology to establish itself as the prime voice in Karachi. Zia had to neutralise Bhutto’s PPP, and hence the Sindhis; he found it convenient to let the MQM blossom with its heinous ways of the initial years. The Sindhis migrated out of Sindh’s capital while Karachi’s Muhajirs of all strain fell in line. Musharraf needed political legitimacy to his usurped rule; using his ethnic similarity he cultivated the MQM and to make the alliance kosher, urged the party to go national widening its base of functioning and becoming more inclusive. This has greatly helped the MQM’s national stock, making it a recognised political player with impeccable secular credentials. The process has thrown up some of the brighter politicians too from the middle-class manifold, adding an improved face to national politics. Is the MQM ever likely to succeed beyond Karachi’s precincts in order to become a real national political force, and move away from its tag of a perpetual king-maker? The short answer is: it has all the makings. It seems though that some structural corrections will be required. One, Altaf Hussain’s stranglehold, and an ethnicity driven reminder of the party’s make-up must now give way to a more national outlook with one of the more contemporary MQM politicians giving it greater appeal beyond Karachi and its adjunct, Hyderabad. Two, even at the cost of ceding some tactical space in Karachi, the MQM must organise itself more robustly in other provinces. The inherent rule in any offensive is a natural dilution in defence at the home base; but for success to accrue the offensive must be wholehearted and committed. It generally will then become the tipping point. Else, the MQM will remain only a Karachi-based party and a king-maker at best. Does the party feel secure enough to venture beyond Karachi and dilute its influence in Karachi permitting coexistence remains the moot point. Karachi’s current predicament lies in this basic formulation as indeed the answer to these predicaments. It is almost imperative for national political health to permit the MQM beyond Karachi and encourage it to don more national colours. The flip-side is the Masada complex, which only spells disaster. With its fascist history and dictatorial hold over Karachi and the Urdu speaking Muhajir community of Karachi and Hyderabad, the MQM is more likely to continue to seek favour and space, plainly blackmail advantage for itself. When any entity, the PPP and the ANP in current times, will contest such stranglehold, the consequence will be a burning and bleeding Karachi. As much as it remains the test of MQM’s maturity as a political force, it also is a test of accepting the MQM as a growing political entity at the national level. The price else will be too enormous to bear. REFERENCE: COMMENT: Karachi’s karma —Shahzad Chaudhry The writer is a political and defence analyst Monday, August 08, 2011\08\08\story_8-8-2011_pg3_2 

capital talk - 22nd aug 2011 - p3


International Monitoring of Karachi (Daily Jang 21 Aug 2011) Sunday, August 21, 2011, Ramzan Al Mubarak 20, 1432 A.H

On one hand Jang Group file news that Two to three International Espionage setup are working to check terrorism in Karachi whereas in the same newspaper's Islamabad files that several area have been declared out of bound for diplomat:) Keep it up - Jang Main Page 21 Aug 2011 .; .

KARACHI: A number of eminent religious leaders have invited the Army to intervene and take over control of Karachi. Addressing a joint press conference at the Khatme Nabuwwat office here on Sunday, religious leaders questioned the silence of Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry on the issue. They said not only are the residents of Karachi, but all the people of Pakistan, are also suffering from intense pain to see the unending series of senseless killings in the city which has assumed the form of the worst kind of barbarism. The religious leaders included: Mufti Mohammad Taqi, Mufti Mohammad Naeem, Qari Mohammad Usman, Maulana Tanveerul Haq Thanvi, Maulana Abdul Mannan, Maulana Azizur Rehman and Maulana Yusuf Kasuri. “Innocent people are terrified and scared. Even those who have absolutely nothing to do with politics or communal prejudices are kidnapped and subjected to the worst type of torture. A bus full of passengers was torched in which a number of poor passengers were burnt alive,” they said. “The series of barbarism seems to have no end. The administration, police and even Rangers are behaving like silent spectators. It seems that terrorists have been given a free hand.” They said in these circumstances if government, army and people do not act jointly, ‘we will be fast sliding down the abyss of destruction’. Therefore we appeal to all patriotic sections of society that they should play their due role in view of the grim situation. We also appeal to ulema, imams and khateebs of mosques to educate people and promote love and brotherhood through their sermons in the light of Holy Quran and Sunnah. They should also use their influence to reconcile the warring parties in the light of divine ordains and Holy Quran and Sunnah. “We also appeal to the common man not to lend ears to rumours which are often baseless and become the root and cause of death and destruction.” The religious scholars made a fervent appeal to every Pakistani to beg forgiveness of Allah Almighty and mould their lives in accordance with the teachings of our great religion. “We must take advantage of the holy month of Ramazan and bow down before Allah Almighty so that He takes pity on our ordeal,” they concluded. REFERENCE: Ulema invite Army to take control of Karachi our correspondent Monday, August 22, 2011 

No comments: