KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) former leader Farooq Sattar along with Khawaja Izharul Hassan, Qamar Mansoor and others appeared before the Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) in cases of inciteful speeches here on Saturday.
The hearing had to be adjourned until December 8 due to the concerned judge’s absence.
It was stated that the accused are expected to be indicated in 5 more cases as well. However, the ATC had indicted Farooq Sattar, Karachi Mayor Waseem Akhtar and others in 21 cases related to hate speeches in its last hearing. All accused had been granted interim bail in these cases.
Talking to media persons outside the court, Khawaja Izhar said that he appeared before the ATC to defend false allegations levelled against him. “The witnesses will have to prove our guilt. There is a need to bring betterment to the country’s judiciary. Let me remind you that there are at least 14,000 people whose cases are not proceeding as they should,’’ he said.
Izhar reaffirmed Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui as the leader of MQM-P. He, however, refused to accept the decision to expel Farooq Sattar from the party saying that “it would be very complicated if I started to offer my accountability inside the party.”
Sattar also spoke to the media outside the court and said that last night, during his press conference, he had presented a solution to the party crisis. He talked about certain quarters occupying the party, resulting in losses and said that the coordinating committee has failed to maintain its confidence amongst party workers due to its controversial decisions.
Sattar stressed the need of intra-party elections and said that the decision to revoke his basic membership was rejected by the workers. “Party workers will not accept such decisions and we want to run the party through political and democratic ways,” he said.
He expressed the importance of all leaders, including him, declaring the details of their assets before the party workers. “I have already shown the details of a white land cruiser under my use,” Sattar said.
He also said that when he led the party after August 23 he was aware of what was happening within the party.
The former MQM-P leader said that Dr Khaliq Maqbool Siddiqui should talk about accountability and Prime Minister (PM) Imran Khan should also start an accountability process within his party. He asserted that corruption cannot be eradicated from the country until accountability is not carried out.
“I have had nothing to do with MQM-London (MQM-L) as my party had separated from it on August 22,” he said, adding that minus-one happened incidentally, but ‘minus-two’ is a conspiracy. He maintained that he will restore the party’s position in the next general elections.