LAHORE: The Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) and Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) on Wednesday announced to set aside differences to form a united political force after merging both the parties. MQM’s Dr Farooq Sattar and PSP’s Mustafa Kamal addressed a joint press conference in which they stated the modalities and operational framework of the new party. They announced that the new party’s name will not be MQM or PSP and that they will come up with a new name, electoral symbol and manifesto which will be representative of the welfare of the Muhajir community. Setting aside the bitter rivalry the leaders of MQM and PSP announced that they are laying the groundwork for eventually uniting together to form a greater political force to contest the 2018 general elections under “one name, one manifesto, one symbol and one party”. The step was taken to prevent Karachi’s vote bank splitting. MQM chief Dr Farooq Sattar while addressing a press conference at Karachi Press Club with PSP chairman Mustafa Kamal by his side announced that the modalities of this alliance will be decided in the days to come. “MQM and PSP have decided to forge a joint political alliance, a working relationship. We plan to step into elections with a joint slogan, joint manifesto and joint electoral sign.” He declared that workers of both parties must understand that this union is being done to give Karachi a better future. He further added, “We want our due share in the development of this city. We want to be counted. We want jobs for our youth” Sattar explained that PSP and MQM had been negotiating these points in the recent past for “positive and collective efforts”. The MQM chief emphasised that a united Karachi is inevitable for a prosperous Pakistan. Kamal maintained that Farooq Sattar wants to continue our struggle under the banner of one party. “The central point of Farooq Bhai’s speech is that we need one manifesto, one symbol and one party to continue our struggle for the people of Pakistan,” he declared. Kamal praised ‘political farsightedness’ and ‘open-hearted’ approach of Farooq Sattar. “We need to do justice with our designations as leaders, we need to become one at this historic moment,” he added. The PSP chief said that if a Muhajir leader is not ready to embrace other ethnicities, he will only encourage more hatred against the Muhajir community. This has been the reason why Karachi has been so wracked by violence in the past, he said. “I appreciate that Farooq Bhai took such a major step; that he set his ego aside to see eye to eye with us on this. We took this decision (to merge) not because of how much we would individually gain or lose, but how much our people would gain or lose,” Kamal explained. Kamal asserted that the modalities of the newly formulated political union will be revealed later. Furthermore, he made it clear that “it would be anything but MQM”. “I am not stepping back from what I stand for, we came to bring down Altaf Hussain and destroy his toxic legacy,” he contended. The PSP chief announced, “Farooq Sattar may be reluctant to the idea of PSP at this moment, but we have decided that we will not unite under the name of MQM.” During his address, Kamal appealed the security forces to forgive youth and residents of Karachi, similar to the amnesty announced for youth of Balochistan who previously held weapons against the state.