Daily Briefs

Photo : Bilawal Bhutto offers offers an equal number of seats in Sindh to MQM (Dawn)

1 January 2020, Wednesday

Imran Khan to address the concerns of MQM-P, after Bilawal's offer

Bilawal Bhutto earlier offers an equal number of seats in Sindh to MQM to quit the PTI alliance

PR Daily Brief |

1 January 2020, Wednesday

What happened?

According to a media report in the News, Imran Khan "took strong notice of offer given by Pakistan People's Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari to MQM-P and directed the government team to meet MQM-P leadership and ensure that the federal government would fulfill all its promises made for uplift of Karachi." 

Earlier, the leader of the PPP - Bilawal Bhutto, gave an open invitation to the MQM-P to quit the PTI alliance. Bhutto was quoted to have stated in a public meeting: "We will support you one hundred per cent. For the sake of the people of Karachi, we are ready to provide an equal number of ministries [in Sindh] to the MQM but the [only] condition is that it sends Imran packing." (Dawn)

What is the background?

MQM-P is one of the main factions of the MQM after the party split before the 2018 elections. During the elections, the MQM-P won 6 seats for the National Assembly, and now has seven seats in the Parliament including a reserved seat. For the Sindh provincial assembly, it won 15 seats in the elections, and have 20 in total today. Of the total 168 seats, PPP has 99 seats and the PTI 30 for the provincial assembly in Sindh.

Though MQM's dominance in Karachi was undisputed during the last three decades, 2018 elections witnessed its steep downfall. The PTI was the biggest beneficiary of the MQM's decline in Karachi. The breakup of the MQM following the Establishment's continuous political and military pressure on the MQM and Altaf Hussain, finally have resulted in breaking the party. 

The PTI's electoral rise in Karachi is partly engineered and partly sociological/demographic. The increase of Pashtun votes in Karachi and the decline of the Awami National Party's influence in the city were partly responsible for the PTI's tremendous electoral performance in Karachi – both for the national and provincial assemblies. However, it was the Establishment's pressure on the MQM that have resulted in the breakup, and subsequently, MQM-P support to the PTI.

During recent years, one could see Bilawal Bhutto attempting to revive the PPP in Sindh. It is important for the PTI to ensure that the MQM-P stays with the alliance; Karachi's politics depends on this.

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