Agha Siraj Durrani Speaker Sindh Assembly, on Saturday, said that Karachi ought to be made the federal capital once again. The PPP leader argued that Karachi was the seat of power of the Federal government when Pakistan was created, and the decision must be reversed.
Speaking to the media after appearing before an accountability court, Agha Siraj Durrani rejected the notion of imposing Article 149 and maintained that the Federal government can only advise and provide direction to the provincial government.
Karachi as Federal Capital?
With regard to the position of Karachi in the power structure, Durrani said, “Karachi was the federal capital of Pakistan when it was created. Now, it is the capital of Sindh. The decision should be reversed and Karachi should be made the capital once again.”
Media reports reveal that Pir Pagara, the Chief of the Grand Democratic Alliance (GDA) and the Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F), had advised the Federal law Minister, Farogh Naseem to bring the federal capital back to Karachi.
#Karachi was #Pakistan's federal capital in 1947. The once bustling centre of economic and cultural activities now show the worst signs of neglect as the federal and provincial governments squabble among each other for the city’s control.https://t.co/c7vU3f050c
— NayaDaur Media (@nayadaurpk) September 14, 2019
Pir Pagara, who is also the spiritual leader of the Hur Jamaat, advised that instead of deliberating the prospects of assuming control of Karachi’s governance, the federal government should demand to bring the federal capital back to Karachi, as the city is now secure.
The GDA Chief was reacting to the statement issued by the Federal Law Minister, who had stated that given the situation prevailing across the metropolis, exercising Article 149 of the Constitution would allow the federal government to address these issues effectively.
Those who talked about creating Pakhtunistan were vanquished, and those who talk about creating a Sindhudesh will also suffer the same consequences.
Pir Pagara remarked that separating Karachi from Sindh is unacceptable, and he expressed his surprise, criticizing the federal law minister for making such a statement without much consideration to sentiments across Sindh.
The GDA Chief recalled that upon the creation of Pakistan, Karachi was established as the federal capital, and the majority of the people who migrated from India preferred to settle down in Karachi. However, Pir Pagara noted that a series of abrupt decisions led to the capital being shifted to Islamabad, and this shifting cost the national exchequer billions of rupees. He stressed that there was no reason to shift the capital from Karachi to Islamabad.
Why out of blue solution for Karachi?
Karachi is provincial metropolitan and capital of Sindh. It is neither domain of any political party and nor a federal territory. It is governed in accordance with rules of… https://t.co/2X6msmK4oM
— Ali Mardan Rahoojo (@MardanRahoojo) September 11, 2019
Pir Pagara argued that even from the specter of security, Karachi cam become the safest capital of the country. He argued that the Federal Law Minister must demand returning the federal capital status back to Karachi, as handing over the control of the metropolis to the federal government does not reflect any wisdom.
Stirring up Ethnic Differences
Earlier, Federal Minister for Law and Justice, Farogh Naseem, had clarified his stance, maintaining that he had never discussed the prospects of making Karachi a province. Naseem lamented that his remarks were misconstrued and cited out of context.
Earlier on Friday, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi also ensured senators and lawmakers from Sindh that the PTI-led federal government holds the constitution in high esteem. He noted that the statements made by Farogh Naseem about invoking Article 149 in Karachi in order to hand over administrative control to the federal government have been misconstrued.
Addressing a session of the National Assembly, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said, “We have great respect for the constitution, and we have always respected it in the past and will do so in the future as well. Sindh is an essential part of Pakistan, and we will not do anything that will damage the provincial autonomy of the province.”
Qureshi criticized Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari for responding to Barrister Farogh Nadeem’s statement by stirring up ethnic differences. He said, “Bilawal must not give the impression of provincial differences and discrimination in Pakistan.”
— UK 🌐 (@UmarKamran96) September 14, 2019
The Foreign Minister added, “It is my advice to Bilawal Bhutto, this is the beginning of your political career. As the Chairman of the PPP, you do not have the right to use the Sindh Card.” Qureshi argued that it was highly “irresponsible” of the PPP Chairman to talk about the creation of “Sindhudesh” and “Pakhtunistan”.
He said, “Those who talked about creating Pakhtunistan were vanquished, and those who talk about creating a Sindhudesh will also suffer the same consequences.”