KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) is observing three-day mourning on Saturday to protest against the killings of its Sindh assembly lawmaker Sajid Qureshi and his young son in Karachi.
Schools, businesses, shops and petrol stations are closed in the city and public transport is scarce.
The MQM MPA Muhammad Sajid Qureshi, from Karachi’s PS-103 constituency, was shot dead along with his son on Friday by unknown miscreants when they were returning after offering Juma prayers near Ziauddin Hospital in North Nazimabad.
Following the incident, the MQM coordination call and ‘appealed’ to the traders and transporters to keep their businesses closed on Saturday.
“Condemning the incidents as a big tragedy the Co-ordination Committee announced to observe three days of mourning throughout the country. The decision was taken in a joint meeting of the committee in London and Pakistan,” said an MQM statement.
“The committee appealed to traders, industrialists, shopkeepers, transporters and people belonging to different spheres of life to observe the day of mourning and suspend business activities and keep transport vehicles off the road on Saturday.”
The associations of key business segments announced to stay away from their regular work on Saturday on the MQM appeal. They showed the same gesture on MQM’s appeal only last week when the party called for a ‘day of mourning’ and ‘appealed’ them to keep their businesses closed against killing of its workers.
“We strongly condemn the killing of MPA Qureshi and his young son and hold government responsible for failing to protect the lives of citizens,” said Ismail Lapuria, secretary of the Sindh Tajir Ittehad — a common platform of wholesale and retail markets across the province.
“We’ve responded to their [MQM] appeal and decided to keep business closed on Friday. It’s only to keep the protest peaceful and support the cause to condemn the brutality.”
Same were the thoughts from the Pakistan Petroleum Dealers’ Association and Karachi Transport Ittehad, who ‘supported’ the MQM protest and announced to keep fuel stations closed and buses off the road.