KARACHI - Terming BBC's documentary film ill-founded, Muttahida Qaumi Movement deputy convener Dr Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui said on Sunday a media trial was being carried out to tarnish the image of party chief Altaf Hussain and MQM at the international level.

In his address to a huge gathering at New MA Jinnah Road near Quaid’s mausoleum to express solidarity with Altaf Hussain with the slogan "yes to media freedom, no to media trial", the MQM leader said soon the conspirators would chew back their words and apologise for their lies.

MQM coordination committee members, party legislators, office-bearers of sectors and unit committees and workers were also present on the occasion.

Amid slogans of participants of the gathering WHO were holding banners and portraits of MQM chief, Siddiqui said if enemies desired to try MQM chief, then initially they should try devotees of Altaf Hussain who had gathered to express their love and solidarity with their leader.

“Altaf Hussain had not only spread the message of peace and love, but played an exemplary role in promoting peace in the country and, hence, leveling allegations against him was, certainly, part of a deep-rooted conspiracy,” stated Siddiqui.

He said it was from the day one that conspiracies were hatched against MQM and now hindrances were being created internationally, but today the citizens had declared their decision by rejecting the media trial of MQM and Altaf Hussain .

MQM parliamentary leader in National Assembly Dr Farooq Sattar, while addressing the gathering, said any propaganda against MQM chief was a propaganda against the country. He said a situation was being created nationally and internationally to stop MQM from playing its traditional role of steering the country out of challenges and crises.

"BBC's documentary has been made to influence the British court. We are not condemning British Broadcatsting Corporation but also rejecting its documentary," Sattar added.

He reiterated MQM and Altaf Hussain respected freedom of expression and freedom of press, but they rejected media trial, indicating that the party might use its legal right if needed. He said the British authorities would soon withdraw all the allegations levelled against Hussain as the Pakistani authorities did in the past.

Calling Karachi the fort against extremism, MQM leader Haider Rizvi said “denouncing Talibanization was our crime” and Pakistan could not be Taliabanised completely unless MQM was present.

MQM leader Amir Khan said Altaf Hussain raised his voice for the oppressed people, and today was the day to unearth conspiracies being hatched against the party and his chief.

“The huge rallies taken out were indicative of the fact that they would foil all such conspiracies as there was no power on earth which could separate us from Altaf Hussain as our beginning starts with Altaf Hussain and our destination is Altaf Hussain as well,” Khan added.

MQM opposition leader Faisal Sabzwari said today’s gathering wrote-off the conspiracy theories and fake stories against the party while the only crime of Altaf Hussain was his ideology of empowering the common man.

Reiterating that MQM was a people’s party, Sabzwari said the party would never stop raising voice for the rights of the oppressed and suppressed people.

MQM leaders Ashfaq Mangi, Mian Ateeq, Nabeel Gabol, Kishwar Zehra, Waqar Shah, Yousuf Shahwani and member of Azad Kashmir Legislative Assembly Tahir Khokhar also spoke on the occasion. They said no conspiracies could separate public from chief Altaf Hussain and all the oppressed people of the country who immensely loved Altaf Hussain would stand like a rock to foil conspiracies against him.

The recent BBC documentary brought MQM out to secure its party chief. MQM lambasted the documentary and termed it a media trial of MQM and Altaf Hussain . It announced a massive protest drive.

Meanwhile, the British authorities formally wrote a letter to Pakistan in which they demanded the government to hand over the suspects in the murder case of MQM leader Dr Imran Farooq, who was assassinated in London in 2010.

According to sources, in the letter London Metropolitan Police claimed the trail of MQM leader’s murder went to Pakistan and requested Pakistan to hand over two suspects, Mohsin Ali Syed and Kashif Khan Kamran, to the British authorities for further progress on investigations.