Absence of Mr, Altaf Hussain has been felt every where. Rumors are surrounding about his bad health and his on going treatment in Germany but still the rumors have been denied by MQM spokesman. What ever the reality is but, this is the fact that he is the only one who could safe MQM from splitting and because of his leadership qualities MQM has reach to such heights. Hussain’s absence in the recent tug of war between political parties over the proposed constitutional amendments gave rise to rumours and speculations. There are reports that he is being treated in Germany for serious illnesses. Despite denials by the MQM spokesperson, there seems to be a modicum of truth in these speculations. The reason for MQM being tightlipped is more than Altaf Hussain’s security. There have been, so far, no succession arrangements within the party. If something were to happen to Altaf Hussain, there is a question mark over who will succeed him and what procedure will be followed to choose a successor. There is certainly a difference between a supreme leader who has set up a party and someone who has now presumably earned his/her spurs in the course of the existence of the party. MQM has gone through many twists and turns including a split, and the original second tier leadership is virtually nowhere to be seen. A few names immediately come to mind as possible successors: Farooq Sattar, MQM’s parliamentary leader in the National Assembly, Governor Sindh Ishratul Ebad and the outgoing nazim of Karachi, Mustafa Kamal. Although Farooq Sattar has been in the forefront of MQM’s politics for many years now, it is unclear if he holds enough influence to be able to compete with other MQM heavyweights. Ishratul Ebad will have to relinquish his office and wait for two years if the party wants the new head to run for elected office. Reportedly, Mustafa Kamal has earned an important position in the party by efficiently running Karachi for four years as nazim. However, his experience has been limited to Karachi and he may not be considered a national stature leader. There are others notable names in MQM; however, it is not clear if any one of them enjoys the undisputed support of not only the top leadership, but of the party as a whole. If MQM were unable to go through a transition or succession in a disciplined way, which is its hallmark, there could conceivably be internal conflict and fissures in what has so far been a monolithic party under Altaf’s iron grip. That will throw the political situation of the country, particularly Sindh, into uncertainty.
What we can do other than praying for his good health and can hope that he will be back soon with good health and same leadership qualities because without him survival of MQM will be at stake.