MQM Killed Hakim Said: Nawaz Sharif
By Rauf Klasra: The News, June 9, 2007
LONDON: Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif on Friday claimed that as the prime minister he knew that the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) had murdered Hakim Muhammad Said in Karachi on October 17, 1998.
Talking to newspersons at the PML-N office here, he also alleged that Federal Minister Babur Ghauri was now secretly playing the role of a "messenger" between President Gen Pervez Musharraf and Altaf Hussain.
He also claimed that Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz would soon ditch President Musharraf and join the opposition parties.Nawaz alleged that Musharraf and Altaf were busy hatching a conspiracy against Pakistan and their collaboration might harm the country. He said that he had made it clear to the MQM leaders, who were part of the coalition government then, either to surrender those who had murdered Hakim Said or quit the Sindh government.
"After the refusal of the MQM to surrender the killers, I preferred to sacrifice the provincial government of Liaqat Jatoi instead of making compromises with those who had killed an honourable man like Hakim Said," he said.
Nawaz said the MQM leaders were playing a dangerous game by collaborating with Gen Musharraf. "Being the twice elected prime minister of Pakistan, I have some understanding of politics, and my political intuition tells me that Altaf and Musharraf are working to harm the country's interests," he said.
Nawaz said, on May 10, while addressing a press conference, he had warned that if the MQM was not stopped from holding a rally in Karachi on the arrival of the chief justice, many innocent people might be killed. He regretted that his timely warning was not heeded to.
Nawaz disclosed that even certain elements had tried to warn Gen Musharraf about the likely bloodshed in Karachi if the MQM was not stopped from holding the rally. But, he claimed that instead of giving a serious thought to that logical advice from the intelligence quarters, Musharraf got furious and told them to leave the room.
Nawaz said that these words gave a clear idea that Musharraf and Altaf had planned the massacre in Karachi. Nawaz also backed the movement of Imran Khan against Altaf and said his own hard-hitting stance on the MQM was known to everybody. He said that he was against the MQM since it murdered Hakim Said.
Nawaz also disclosed that the ruling party leaders sitting in the government were secretly in touch with him to secure their political future after 2007 and claimed that soon Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz would ditch Gen Musharraf and join the opposition, as he was not a stranger to them (Nawaz and Benazir Bhutto) because, as a banker, he used to meet them regularly both within and outside Pakistan.
"Look, you will soon see Shaukat Aziz ditching Gen Musharraf and joining the political leadership of the opposition parties," Nawaz told the press conference. Nawaz asked Benazir to attend the all parties conference in London, instead of sending a five-member delegation of her party, as he observed that her presence would make a difference.
To a question, Nawaz dropped a hint at accepting some of the ruling party members, saying that he would be required to make a distinction between people like Sheikh Rashid and those who did not come out in the open to launch attack on the opposition leaders. However, Nawaz did not reveal who was in touch with him and whether they were federal ministers, MNAs or senators.
Earlier, Nawaz Sharif blasted the top generals and heads of secret agencies who had filed affidavits in the Supreme Court. He wondered how could the generals make such claims in their written statements and that how could they all come to the office of the Army chief only on the phone call of the chief justice.
Nawaz said that they could not dare enter the room of Musharraf unless he directed them to visit his office. He said that it was a ridiculous thing to say that the generals had come to the office of Musharraf on the telephone call from the chief justice and Musharraf had no idea about their likely visit to his office.
He said the secret agencies had no role in the affairs of the chief justice, as no law allowed them to interfere in the legal and constitutional affairs. He said the heads of these agencies were also subverting the Constitution.
Nawaz questioned the powers of heads of secret agencies to even discuss the reference issue with the CJ in the office of the Army chief as this was not their mandate and legal duty. He said that it was a laughable excuse that the chief justice wanted Musharraf to dissolve the assemblies as what kind of benefits a chief justice could get after the sacking of a Parliament.
Nawaz said political change must come and come early in Pakistan but it should not be on the wishes and help of foreign forces like America or rest of the world. Nawaz said that former US President Bill Clinton had made him five telephone calls to persuade him not to conduct nuclear tests and had offered $5 billion as aid but he refused to surrender before pressure and Pakistan became a nuclear state.
Nawaz said, on the other hand, just one telephone call from Collin Powell on 9/11 was more than enough for Musharraf to toe the US line. The former prime minister claimed that had Musharraf been the ruler of Pakistan on May 28, 1998, the country would not have become a nuclear power.