Friday, December 02, 2022
LONDON: Pakistan’s IT and Telecommunication Minister and MQM-Pakistan leader Syed Aminul Haque told a judge of London High Court that he lost control of his email address around half a year ago which he has not been able to recover and that the MQM’s 2015 constitution that formed the basis of his claim at the English court against MQM founder Altaf Hussain was actually fake.
In his extraordinary statement before the court, Syed Aminul Haque, who has brought a claim against Altaf Hussain to take control of seven London properties from him, accepted that he started his case against Altaf Hussain in October 2019 on the basis of MQM’s 2015 constitution but realised later that the valid and real constitution was that of 2016 and not 2015.
He was giving evidence before the Properties and Business Division of the High Court against the party’s founder who is battling a claim from the MQM-Pakistan over the control of seven trust properties worth over £10 million.
Under cross-examination by Altaf Hussain’s lawyer Richard Slade KC, Syed Aminul Haque said: “I realised a year later in 2020 that I had made a mistake in my claim against Altaf Hussain. I rectified the mistake.”
When pressed by the lawyer, the Pakistan IT Minister and MQM parliamentary leader said: “I made the mistake because I am not a lawyer. I am a political worker. I am not a constitutional expert. I was not fully aware so this mistake happened.”
The Insolvency and Companies Court (ICC) Judge Mr Clive Jones asked Syed Aminul Haque how he found the mistake and who told him he had made a mistake by launching a whole case on the basis of a document that the MQM-Pakistan wanted to go against to prove its case against Altaf Hussain to get from him seven London properties. Syed Aminul Haque started the case with the approval and blessings of Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui, the leader of MQM-Pakistan.
The MQM-Pakistan is suing Altaf Hussain on the basis that the MQM is ruled by the 2016 constitution that was approved and adopted at the end of August 2016 after Altaf’s 22nd August 2016 controversial speech – and Altaf’s name and position was removed in that constitution.
The MQM-London says that the party’s October 2015 constitution is the only valid constitution as that was approved on 21st of October 2015.
Syed Aminul Haque accepted it to be true when asked that he changed his position after legal opinion that the 2015 constitution was not helpful to the position of MQM-Pakistan in the claim against Altaf Hussain. When asked where he got the document from at the time of starting the claim, Syed Aminul Haque said he found this document “at the table of Wasim Akhtar, this came from the Central Executive Committee.”
It also emerged during the cross-examination that Syed Aminul Haque mentioned 25 MQM leaders as signatories in the 2016 constitution – the same number and names he had also mentioned as signatories for the 2015 constitution.When asked how this happened, Aminul Haque said it was a “mistake”.
“I have already told you I realised it was a mistake and everything was rectified. I am an ordinary political activist.” Syed Aminul Haque said the 2015 constitution draft was prepared by Altaf Hussain and Waseem Akhtar.
He said this constitution, though, was never approved and never discussed for approval by the MQM Rabita Committee.
The judge then asked Syed Aminul Haque how come he gave the 2015 constitution to his London lawyers in 2020 and how did it come into his possession, Syed Aminul Haque replied he had made an “error” as he was in possession of around five different constitutions of the MQM.
Aminul Haque said that the MQM’s 2012 constitution made Altaf Hussain a de facto leader, sole decision maker. “Altaf Hussain gave us our ideology. Everybody respected him and followed him.”
Syed Aminul Haque called MQM-London’s constitution as the final document a “fake document” and said that it never came before the Central Executive Committee for discussion. Altaf Hussain’s lawyer asked him about the disclosure he submitted in the court in January 2022 and why he failed to declare several documents that he should have.
The IT Minister replied that the MQM-P Rabita Committee email that he used to send communications to Altaf Hussain and the MQM International Secretariat was hacked around half a year ago – before the start of the current London trial.
Richard Slade KC asked him how the email was hacked when it worked fine for all those years and how it was hacked when he was asked about a full disclosure in relation to the evidence around the constitutional evidence.
It emerged that Haque had disclosed only one email from this account and for the other evidence he claimed to have lost control of the email. Syed Aminul Haque accepted that no searches were conducted on the email but he accepted the “hacked” email address was in existence “probably for decades” and “tons of emails” were received and sent out from this email address.
The ICC Judge Mr Clive Jones asked Aminul Haque what steps the MQM-Pakistan took to produce documents for the London court trial and Haque replied: “We tried our best but couldn’t get those documents. There were thousands of documents. Tons of material.” The first part of the trial continues at the London High Court.
Originally published in The News