In his Jalsa on January 8 Pervez Musharraf has announced that he will return to Karachi by the end of the month. It takes great courage to return to the country where people are already calling out for his blood. He himself said that the relative comforts one gets while living abroad are not given up unless the rewards on the other side are greater. Musharraf reiterated that he wants to return to help his people and not for any personal gain. He spoke out clearly against the charges being leveled against him like the Nawab Bugti case and Benazir assassination. It wasn’t only the urban Karachiites who were present at the gathering. Participants came from Sukkur, Khairpur and other interior areas of the country showing their support.

Contesting elections from Chitral shows that he has the confidence in the support of the Northern regions. His support for the province of Hazara is going to further increase his popularity there. Ethnicity is one of the core sensitive issues of our population right now, he noted. The presence of Bengalis, perhaps the most discriminated minority, was specially noted and it was wonderful to see their presence at the rally.

At this point it is not important to note how many people come out to support a particular party but to appreciate the fact that at least people are coming out for their democratic right. The APML rally was also a part of the democratic process.

Masooma Imran,

Karachi, January10.