A US-based group representing expatriate Mohajirs has released the map and the Constitution of an autonomous ‘Greater Karachi’ within Pakistan.
Mohajirs are Urdu-speaking immigrants who left India in 1947 during the Partition and settled in Pakistan. A large chunk of them are settled in the Sindh province.
The proposed ‘Greater Karachi’ autonomous region will continue to be an integral part of Pakistan, though with greater control over its resources and internal affairs, according to Nadeem Nusrat, head of the Washington DC-based nonprofit Voice of Karachi.
‘Greater Karachi’ would be a region comprising urban Sindh Province of Pakistan and Karachi city, he said in a statement.
Pakistan will continue to have full control over the country’s foreign, defence and fiscal policies, similar to the status Jammu and Kashmir enjoyed until the recent constitutional changes made by the Indian Government, he said in a statement.
Pakistan has opposed such move and described this as anti-national.
“Under the proposed constitution, ‘Greater Karachi’, will have its own Parliament headed by a chief executive who will be directly elected by the state’s voters. The Greater Karachi Parliament will only deal with legislative matters pertaining to the region,” Nusrat said.
In a statement, Nusrat said that the creation of ‘Greater Karachi’ is direct result of “racist policies” of Sindh’s landed elite which has deliberately kept the province’s Mohajir population detached from being a source of governance.
Karachi is the largest and most populous metropolitan city in Pakistan and the capital of Sindh province. In 2016, Karachi had an estimated population of more than 16 million people, which makes it the the 7th largest urban agglomeration and the largest city in Pakistan.