Press Gallery: Blue clues about Karachi
Blue clues about Karachi
Islamabad: Lower House of the parliament is busy doing what it can do at best, debating while knowing very well that this proverbial playing to the gallery game is making hardly any difference in the killing grounds of Karachi and Quetta where dead bodies continue to pile up, politically backed criminal gangs continue to hold sway and talks of an army operation are filling the air.
Isn’t it ironic that both in Quetta and Karachi scenarios the deadly game is being controlled by absentee politically leadership. Look at Karachi and you will find the main player sitting in London while in case of Quetta the main players pulling the strings (likes of Marris and Mengals) and openly backing the youth-led-insurgency are sitting in Karachi. More ironic may be the fact that despite knowing this all our political top brass is seen either staging an occasional photo-ops with them either in London or in Karachi’s posh areas or issuing joint statements with them assuring the terrorized population that things will soon be sorted out (which for all practical purposes mean doing nothing).
Whether there is a connection between those sitting in London and controllers of Quetta residing in Karachi might lead us to many conspiracy theories but one thing is for sure that well trained hands of Karachi mafias are deeply entrenched into Quetta youth gangs. Now whether this coordination started with late Bugti’s cordial gesture towards MQM’s Imran Farooq when he escaped the military operation and sought refuge with Bugtis’ or the trained mafias of Karachi have just decided to export their terror tactics to Baloch lands, is something which better be left for the future historians because these are not the things which our political leadership would like to understand at this point.
To them it seem more sort of a turf war in Karachi while Quetta, has always been and still is, a land far off from Islamabad where handful of miscreants hardly pose any threat to the safe shores of Islamabad or rulers. Therefore, let’s try to understand the real game from some insiders who constantly attend not only all emergent meetings in Presidency (please don’t assume that I will be referring here to Rehman Malik because his only interest in this entire shuttling saga is to mainly keep himself on media and secondly to pass on certain instructions from one side to the other and vice versa) and have close liaison with the developments which are taking place in London, Governor House Karachi, at Nine-Zero and even at 70 Clifton in Karachi (of course Presidency, where not one, not two, three meetings were held just today to gauge Gen. Kiyani’s recent statement, Altaf Hussain’s Call for an Army Operation and even his telephonic address to his brigades and that too in English).
Sitting with these insiders reveal that since London has always been a fast friend of Pakistan by not only providing refuge to many run-away-politicians but also by guarantying the power deals in the country, therefore, no wonder the latest MQM turn-around was orchestrated under the cool wings of Queen’s representatives (in the presences of some representatives from Holy kingdoms and some informed spy-masters).
Under the deal, such was pressure on Altaf Bhai that he was once told to pack up and pay the last visit to the historical places of London before heading back to Karachi but then it was agreed that if they stop playing the spoiler’s role, they will be given some grace period and gestures from not only the Queen’s men but also by the local actors in Karachi. Today’s speech of Altaf Bhai in which he time and again resorted to his long-paused-English sermons, it was considered by these players that MQM chief was not only giving a message to the foreign guarantors but also to the locals that uprooting his long queue of villas from Northern London will only make situation worse. As a last resort to the pressure mounted on him, the same Altaf Hussain who has always wanted to have a political settlement of the issue (and used to loath the idea of an army operation) asked for an army operation to purge the city of criminal elements belonging to any political party, including his own.
Whether this will pave way for more openness in a city which has become used to MQM domination in the past couple of decades—thanks mainly to the military dictators and distracted national parties—is something which these insiders doubt very much. They are sure that no matter how situation is seen but the fact remains that whosoever has brought South African gangs into the city and whatever Asfand National party and Peoples Party wants from the city along with Sunni Tehrik and Afaq groups or other smaller splinter groups, it’s the political demarcation which is likely to bring some sort of balance in the city of Quaid-e-Azam.
It simply is not the matter of Liyari, from where President Zardari has indicated to field the party’s chairperson Bilawal Bhutto in the coming elections, it’s the matter of giving something to every representative political and religious entity in the city and ending the private militias raised in the name of ethnic and sectarian blocks all over the city, they asserted. Certainly if the incharge of various sectors hailing from a certain political (ethnic) outfit is continue to sell fear to the city to extort certain financial and power benefits, then gangs like Rehman Dacoit (running under different leadership now after the killing of Dacoit) or Arshad Papu or Babu Ladla or Zikris will continue to pop up to claim their share with the ultimate backing of all other political and even religious parties. With both sides having armed themselves heavily, will political leadership backing this gangsters and wars need more bloodshed or will they consider it enough to start a negotiated settlement, remains the question now.
As for Quetta or Baluchistan is concerned, that unfortunately is something which does not carry the same priority on the agenda items of our power players, therefore, no matter what Gen. Kiyani or others might say, the game unleashed in and around Gawadar port will continue to remain in the hands of certain Islamic neighbouring countries and some international powers. At worst, and only after political re-demarcation of Karachi is carried out amicably then Quetta might surface on the maps of our strategic political leadership, agreed these insiders.
The solution provided by army chief in one of his recent and may be rare talks with the media seem simple (he had asked for the political government, especially the provincial government to take initiative of talks with miscreants) but then it carries certain repercussions. After all how much load should we put on Presidency as it already is running a province (whose Chief Minister is known for having the traits of late and last Mughal emperor Bahadar Shah Zafar), keeping a close coordination with C-Leaguers to ensure that Punjab or Sharifs remains boiling and now asking the presidency to run Ada Raisani might be a bit too much. Because these insiders believe that running one Bhadar Shah Zafar is already taking too much toll and managing another one might not bode well for the first one. Therefore, let’s hope that presidency can avoid an army operation and sort out things with the help of rangers in Karachi and by ensuring the ample pressure on Altaf Bhai can get the new political demarcation of the city not on ethnic but on politically driven linguistic basis and thus bring some comparative calm as well, hoped the parting insiders.
Will all this work or not is just a guess work but do we have any other options then to guess and hope under the current circumstances and with the present lot of political leadership? Well my guess will be as good as yours so hope for the best for the poor masses of this land of the pure.
Tags: Karachi , MQM , Altaf , Gangs , War , Mafias
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