- Murad says ZA Bhutto framed labour laws, gave concept of minimum wage
KARACHI: On the recent demand of Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) to bifurcate Sindh, Chief Minister (CM) Syed Murad Ali Shah here on Thursday said that MQM and Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) are at loggerheads, and just to win political support of people of Karachi, the MQM has again raised the issue of a separate province.
Speaking to media after attending a reception hosted by the ambassador of Azerbaijan to celebrate 25 years of diplomatic relations between Azerbaijan and Pakistan, he said that this demand is like a bubble of hot air and it shouldn’t be taken seriously.
He also said that the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) has swallowed the bitter pill of supporting the constitutional amendment for starting delimitation on the basis of provisional census results so that elections could be held on time.
CM Shah accused the federal government of carrying out census at a snail’s pace. “Had it [federal government] carried its census assignment on a fast track basis, the constitutional amendment would have not been required,” he said and added, “We have swallowed the bitter pill and agreed to amend the constitution so that delimitations could be made on the basis of provisional census results against which we have serious reservations.”
He went on to say that “we are a political party and cannot afford to delay general elections”.
Replying to a question, the chief minister said that MQM knows very well that Sindh cannot be torn apart in two provinces. He added, “The MQM is struggling for its survival, their leaders have lost their political base and now their workers, leaders and well-wishers are with PPP because the PPP government has restored peace and returned normal life and prosperity to the city.”
He also said that PPP has gained a vast political base in Karachi, Hyderabad, Mirpurkhas and Sukkur. “PPP is a genuine political secular force and is above linguistic, sectarian and religious considerations,” he said and added that under the umbrella of PPP, people of different religions, sects, languages and schools of thought were united.
“This is why we are called a federal party,” he asserted.
Separately, CM Shah said that after Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah, it was Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto who framed labour laws, initiated welfare schemes for workers and gave the concept of minimum wage.
While addressing a ceremony to hand over 1,024 flats and a 200-bed hospital from the federal government to Sindh Workers Welfare Board here at the CM House, he said that Quaid-e-Azam founded the country and Quaid-e-Awam made it a modern welfare state for workers by taking drastic steps, such as enacting labour laws, fixing working hours and minimum wage, establishing residential schemes for them and providing them health and education facilities.
“The work left incomplete by Shaheed Bhutto was completed by Shaheed Benazir Bhutto,” he said.
The chief minister also said that on the directives of former president Asif Zardari, former federal labour minister Syed Khursheed Shah constructed 1,024 apartments for workers in Sindh. After 18th amendment, the federal government is handing over these flats and hospital to Sindh government’s workers’ welfare board.