KARACHI: Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) lawmaker Syed Asif Hasnain on Sunday defected to former Karachi mayor Mustafa Kamal’s Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP).

“From today, I will have no connection with MQM. I resign from my seat [as well],” he told reporters. “I have left MQM’s mandate because I want to work for Pakistan, not against it.”

Hasnain, who was elected from NA-255 Karachi in the 2013 general elections, urged other MQM leaders and members to leave their party and join PSP. “Don’t be afraid of anyone. Join the PSP and support Mustafa Kamal.”

He was detained following raids on MQM’s offices after Altaf’s anti-Pakistan speech on August 22. Dr Farooq Sattar in an interview claimed Hasnain was not in contact with the party since then.

Asked if he was under pressure from Rangers after his detention, the former MQM member said it was not the first time he was held by law enforcers.

Commenting on Altaf’s decision to let Sattar run the party, Kamal said, “As long as he (Altaf) is alive, he won’t let anyone else lead his party. He killed whoever was capable of doing so. He killed Azeem Tariq. He killed Imran Farooq.”