Jamaat-i-Islami party holds march for citizen’s rights

Pakistan’s Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) party will today lead a march for Karachi’s development. Karachi is the capital of Sindh province and

Pakistan Rizwan Tabassum

Photo: Rizwan Tabassum

Pakistan’s Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) party will today lead a march for Karachi’s development.

Karachi is the capital of Sindh province and the nation’s industrial and financial centre. As a result of recent gas shortages, city residents are facing frequent power outages ranging from 10-12 hours. The power outages have exacerbated water shortages, since household water machines require electricity, and crippled 70% of the city’s business life. The gas shortage is also expected to double by the winter, and recent torrential rains have devastated agriculture, costing Pakistan $449 million per day.

The JI party has blamed the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party and the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP), which have led the Sindh provincial government for the past 12 years, for Karachi’s problems. The PTI and PPP continue to interfere or criticise each other’s campaigns in an effort to discredit the other party. Most recently, the PTI criticised the PPP’s COVID-19 lockdown. In return, the PPP accused PTI of spreading the virus.

The PPP and PTI recently proposed a $6 million plan to fund water supply, waste management, and transportation projects. but JI and other political parties are sceptical of its ability to address Karachi’s corruption and administrative issues. JI’s march today is likely to further complicate the rollout of the plan and re-energise competition between political parties for electoral influence in Karachi, with PTI likely to continue to gain electoral support.