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Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P) on Saturday placed three major demands in a meeting with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi at the Governor House in Karachi that included: quashing of criminal cases against MQM-P leadership including Dr Farooq Sattar, reopening of its political offices and disbursement of the Rs 30 billion development package.

The demands were made by a delegation of the MQM-P comprising Dr Farooq Sattar, Faisal Sabzwari, Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui and Kanwar Naveed who held a detailed meeting with the Prime Minister in Karachi.

A senior member of the party told the Business Recorder that the Prime Minister assured them that the Rs 30 billion package that was agreed at the time the MQM-P voted him as Prime Minister, would be disbursed and some special provisions would be made to get these funds utilized through the local government representatives in Karachi and Hyderabad.

He said that the MQM-P leadership had urged the Prime Minister to increase the funds for the development package as Rs 30 billion were insufficient to complete some mega projects such as Karachi Circular Railway and K-4 water project.

The MQM-P delegation also apprised the Prime Minister of the criminal cases against senior leadership of the party including Dr Farooq Sattar and urged him to get these "politically-motivated" cases quashed.

He said the party delegation also requested the Prime Minister for withdrawal of the cases registered against the leaders and workers after the August 22, 2016 anti-state telephonic speech of the London-based founder of the party to Karachi-based protesters.

"We have completely disowned the party founder and people attached to him after August 22 fiasco, so there is no justification for criminal cases against us," said the MQM leader, adding that the federal government could play a part in withdrawal of these cases. He said that as many as 31 cases were registered against Dr Farooq Sattar and dozens of cases have also been registered against other leaders including Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui and Amir Khan.

After the August 22 hate-speech of the party founder, over six dozens of the party offices including the head office were closed by the Pakistan Rangers (Sindh) and other law enforcement agencies and some of them were razed to the ground following directives from the Sindh government.

The MQM-P delegation also requested the Prime Minister to help the party reopen the closed offices so that the party may start its routine political activities in Karachi and Hyderabad. To a question, he said, the Prime Minister assured the MQM-P delegation to look into all these demands and get back to them through the Sindh Governor after discussing all these issues with relevant departments.

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