All Pakistan Muslim League Registration Begins, Musharraf ComingBy Guest Blogger • Jun 9th, 2010 • Category: Politics • 96 Comments
The All Pakistan Muslim League, led by former president Gen (retd) Pervez Musharraf, has started its ‘political journey’ from Karachi to target, what its representatives call, the politics of dynasty in order to empower the masses.
“During our two-day stay in the city, we observed unprecedented sentiments for Gen Musharraf, which showed that he was more popular than we expected,” said Musharraf’s spokesman Maj-Gen (retd) Rashid Qureshi while addressing a press conference at the Karachi Press Club on Tuesday. “We got an encouraging reception in Sindh,” he said. Rashid Qureshi claimed that Musharraf was also popular among expatriate Pakistanis. He said whenever Pervez Musharraf returns to the country he would lead the party. He said the former president would decide himself the date of his arrival in Pakistan, but hoped that he would return soon.
Speaking next, Barrister Mohammed Ali Saif said that they had started a mass contact campaign in Karachi and other districts of Sindh, which would be followed in the Punjab, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
He announced the setting up of regional councils for Karachi and other districts of Sindh to mobilise the people. He said that they would subsequently call a meeting of all regional councils, adding: “We are approaching the people with a new message i.e. “Pakistan First” and think beyond parochial interests.” He said during this campaign they would raise voice against the family (dynasty) politics and in support of empowering the people.
About the allegations being leveled against Musharraf regarding the Lal Masjid episode, assassination of Nawab Akbar Bugti and former premier Benazir Bhutto, Barrister Saif said these were ìmere allegationsî and Musharraf would respond to them at appropriate forums and appropriate time.
He said Musharraf would defend himself in a ìpolitical wayî before the masses. He, however, avoided a direct reply to a question as to what extent the fate of the All Pakistan Muslim League would be different from the party formed by former Army chief General (retd) Aslam Beg.
He also parried a question as to whether the new Muslim League would support the Army’s intervention in politics. Saif opined that being a lawyer he believed that the Armyís interference in politics would be an extra-constitutional step. But, he added, the intervention of the Army in certain circumstances was a ìpolitical questionî.
He said the government spent Rs 600 million on the United Nations inquiry into the assassination of Benazir Bhutto but its results were not desirable. It was evident from the fact that the government had made the UN report a part of the FIR lodged in Rawalpindi in 2007, he added. He said there could be political motives behind leveling allegations about the Benazirís assassination but the ground realities might be different. He declared that they would respond to the allegations leveled against Musharraf with documentary proofs.
Barrister Saif said the All Pakistan Muslim League has started its political journey at a testing time, claiming that labours, students, women, minorities and different political personalities, had demonstrated solidarity with them during their stay in Karachi.
By Imtiaz Ali