KARACHI - Another MQM stalwart Dr Sagheer yesterday said goodbye to 28-year party association for, what he called, Muttahida chief’s mischievous politics. However, the party rejected Sagheer’s swipe as part of ‘minus-Altaf MQM’ plan.

“I am here as I am going to stand alongside Anees Qaimkhani and Mustafa Kamal, and will play a positive role in helping Pakistan grow,” Sagheer told the media.

He was flanked by Qaimkhani and Kamal who have already parted ways with MQM and announced to launch own political party.

Sagheer, who had served thrice as provincial minister on MQM tickets, talked to the media at Kamal`s DHA residence. Announcing his resignation from the provincial assembly, Sagheer apologised for his failure to honour public mandate.

“I have decided to quit MQM after a long association of about 28 years and also relinquish my MPA post,” he said. “Until 2012, I was unaware of the real MQM agenda but I came to know about the wrongdoings of its leadership after my London visit,” said the once blue-eyed boy of MQM chief Altaf Hussain.

Without mentioning the name of Altaf, he said: “During my association with MQM I insisted the leadership to show mercy on workers and help them get education so they could become true Pakistanis. But my voice went unheard. You never put the education on the priority. You don’t care when scores of workers were arrested. People gave mandate to the MQM but the party leadership gave back hate speeches.”

He added: “Your hate speeches and politics of dead bodies, protests, violence and shutter-down strikes in Karachi were aimed at harming the country. Urdu speaking and Mohajir communities were never against Pakistan and it is unfortunate that we are being labelled as traitor.

“For long Karachi... was being destroyed while Kamal`s newborn party gave me an opportunity to stand up for change. My conscience did not allow me to remain quite, thus I decided to join hands with Kamal and Qaimkhani. They have spoken the hearts of people.”

He urged MQM not to use workers as ‘tissue paper’. “When we protested with the bodies of our slain workers outside CM House, bereaved families used to plead with us as they wanted to take the bodies for burial, but we made them stay,” Sagheer said, adding that he found it difficult to face the bereaved families over such ‘dramas’.

Talking to the media, Kamal rejected the impression of joining another political force and denied any contact with PTI leaders. About Interior Minister Ch Nisar’s statement, he said that instead of new evidence, the minister should look into already available evidence for action against MQM leadership over links with RAW.

He said that the name of his new party is still under consideration and there will be no discrimination regarding party membership on the basis of previous affiliations, race, religion or ethnicity.

On the other hand, the MQM said the press conference was nothing more than a stunt and the party had faced similar situation in year 1992. It claimed that the people were aware of the truth and agenda behind this ‘puppet show’.

Meanwhile, Hammad Siddiqui, said to be a close aide of Anees Qaimkhani returned to Karachi from Dubai. His arrival comes five days after Kamal and Qaimkhani made surprised return to Karachi.

Siddiqui has been facing several criminal charges. A fresh joint investigation team (JIT) probing Baldia Town factory inferno nominated him in the case. The report revealed that on his directives, MQM Korangi sector in-charge Rehman Bhola had demanded Rs20 crore from the factory owners. Siddiqui, a former in-charge of KTC, is also expected to announce his joining Kamal’s party soon.