KARACHI - Hours before his scheduled hanging, former Muttahida Qaumi Movement worker Saulat Mirza Wednesday night made startling revelations, levelling severe allegations against the top MQM leadership.

Mirza, in an unusual statement issued from his death cell, alleged: “At the behest of party’s London-based leader Altaf Hussain, Senator Babar Ghouri ordered four of us to gun down the managing director of Karachi Electric Supply Corporation – currently K-Electric – Shahid Hamid. Ghouri put us through to Altaf Hussain over the phone. Senior party leader Tariq Azeem was also killed on Altaf’s orders.”

Begging pardon for his heinous crimes, Mirza warned party workers and sympathizers against falling in the wrong hands and subsequent brainwashing.

“Today I have become an example for all those who are in the party or deliberating to join it. Let me tell you they use the workers as tissue papers and then throw them away. So open your eyes and do what is right,” he said.

Mirza said that he did not want to be hanged without sharing with the authorities a hoard of information that could prove vital in bringing about peace in Karachi. He said he did not want his hanging to be cancelled. He said he just wanted time to share with the authorities such information that could help bring peace in Karachi. He said he wanted just enough time to testify – to do things he wanted to do in the interest of Karachi peace before he is sent to gallows.

Saulat Mirza was sentenced to death by an anti-terrorism court on May 24, 1999, for killing the then MD Karachi Electric Supply Corporation, Shahid Hamid, and his driver and a guard on July 5, 1997, in Karachi. He was arrested on Dec 10, 1998, from the Karachi airport on his return from Bangkok.

Saulat Mirza said that he was facilitated in jail during the PPP regime. He said the MQM is used to defend the party workers through the Sindh governor. He said any leader who becomes popular is removed from the party.

Saulat Mirza is scheduled to be hanged on March 19 (today) at Machh Jail in Balochistan. All arrangements have been completed in this regard and relatives have also paid their last visit to the death row prisoner. Mirza’s meeting with his wife, son, sisters, brothers and other relatives lasted for almost four hours.

A late night report said that the authorities may delay his execution for some time. A TV channel quoted its sources in the Presidency as saying that Saulat Mirza’s hanging had been put off for three days. The news could not be verified by the time of going to press. However, the delay in hanging, if approved, can give a new twist to the whole scenario.

The Sindh governor, in an early morning statement, said that he never protected any criminal in any manner whatsoever.

Babar Ghouri said Saulat has never been to his house as claimed by him. Neither did the party chief ever ask to kill anyone, he added while denying Saulat’s allegations.