Time for a new strategy in Karachi

MQM

After the high profile raids, the media circus, the declarations from the highest corridors of power, the charges fell flat. Over the weekend an Anti-Terrorism Court acquitted Tahir, alias Lamba, Junaid Khan and Imtiaz, all MQM workers who were accused of being RAW agents and charged with having explosives and illicit weapons.

The court ruled that the prosecution remained totally unable to establish the cases against the accused persons beyond any shadow of the doubt.

This is only the latest failure in the state’s efforts to destroy MQM. Just a few days ago, Scotland Yard announced that it had dropped money laundering investigations against Altaf Hussain due to lack of evidence.

I can understand the state’s frustration. After accusing of treason, mass arrests, demolishing offices, and even admitted torture, MQM simply will not go away. MQM continues to be elected and the state continues to have to mobilise Rangers to prevent MQM rallies.

It is clear that despite the best efforts of some, MQM continues to enjoy support among a large part of Karachi. This raises the question, instead of trying to squeeze people into submission, why don’t we think of how to take them into confidence? Instead of dividing ourselves against each other, shouldn’t we be trying to unite? I am not saying that MQM is an innocent lamb, but I am saying that they are our brothers and when your brother is feeling estranged isn’t it better to invite him home and listen to his troubles?

Karachi is integral part of Pakistan, and mohajirs are integral part of our life’s blood. We need to heal our nation, not divide it further. We need to embrace our brothers, not suffocate them.

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