MQM to take out rallies against workers detention

KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) on Tuesday announced to take out rallies against extra-judicial killings and illegal arrests of its workers by law enforcement agencies (LEAs) in Karachi.

The announcement was made by MQM coordination committee member Haider Abbas Rizvi while addressing a press conference at MQM headquarters, 90, along with other committee members. He said that 46 MQM activists were illegally arrested by LEAs from the city.

“Five activists were picked up by security agencies during January to 28 August 2013, while 41 others were picked up till now after Karachi operation initiated, which included 20 activists picked up by plain-clothed personnel and 20 by police and Rangers men,” he blamed.

Rizvi said that the party would take out rallies in every part of the country and hold demonstration against these illegal arrests and extra-judicial killings.

“We will hold demonstration against these injustices at Karachi Press Club on Thursday, while rallies will be taken out in other parts of the country on Friday,” he said.

The MQM leader said that the recent incident of illegal arrests occurred on April 13 when security personnel whisked away nine MQM activists from Scheme-33 out of which four where thrown after being tortured, while five others were still in their custody. “Those who remain in LEAs custody were Ali Haider, Sameer, Salman, Shoaib and Faizan.”

He said that the families of picked up were in great concern for their loved ones as in the past, several workers were abandoned in the outskirts of the city with torture and gunshot marks.

“205 MQM activists were killed since Karachi operation began, while 21 more were extra-judicially murdered by the security personnel in the same period, “he accused, adding that police had arrested 1475 MQM activists since Karachi operation began.

He said that the party had used all its options to follow the legal procedure which included filing petition in Sindh High Court and informing relevant police and Rangers officials regarding every arrest, but all efforts proved fruitless.

He demanded of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan, Director General Rangers Major Rizwan Akhter, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Sindh Iqbal Mehmood and AIGP Shahid Hayat to take notice of these illegal arrests and bring the responsible people to justice.

He also demanded compensation for heirs of MQM activists who were extra-judicially killed.

Speaking on Pakistan Protection Act, Rizvi said that they had expressed their deepest concern over the Act in the past and it was enforced on the MQM well before it was implemented.

He said that 18 of their activists were being held by security personnel for 90 days for interrogation.

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