January 20, Hicksville New York
National Association of Pakistani Americans (NAPA) and Karachi Peace Movement jointly organized a dialogue of Pakistan based political parties at Antun’s Banquet Hall in New York. Syed Khwaja Omair Hassan president NY chapter of Minhaj-ul-Qur’an spoke on the occasion explaining Dr Quadri’s long march campaign. The following video clip is 20 minutes long, S.Khwaja .Omair Hassan’s speech starts after 5 minutes.
Background: In December 2012, after living for seven years in Toronto, Canada, Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri returned to Pakistan and initiated a political campaign which called for a “democratic revolution” through electoral reforms. Qadri called for a “million-man” march in Islamabad to protest against the government’s corruption. On January 14, 2013, crowds marched down the city’s main avenue. Thousands of people pledged to sit-in until their demands were met. After four days of sit-in, the Government and Qadri signed an agreement called the Islamabad Long March Declaration, which promises electoral reforms and increased political transparency.
Critics have charged that the protests were a ploy by the Pakistan Armed Forces to delay elections and weaken the influence of the civilian government, citing Qadri’s close ties to the military, dual nationality and foreign sources of funding. Lawyers for the Supreme Court of Pakistan claimed that Qadri’s demands are unfeasible because they conflict with the Constitution of Pakistan.