By Farooq Tariq
Labour Party Pakistan joined the All Parties Democratic Movement
on the day when right wing Muslim League Nawaz left the Alliance
on 10th December. Three religious parties including Jamiat Ulamai
Islam JUI of Fazaul Rehman had already left the APDM to contest
the "general elections".
The APDM had decided to boycot the elections under PCO of General
Musharad, the only alliance to do so. This was the demand of the
fighting organisations of the advocates, teachers, students and
also of Awami Jamhuri Tehreek, the Left alliance and generally
of civil society as a whole.
Contesting these elections was to legitimise the Musharaf dictatorship
and its all repressive measures. The only way to get rid of dicatorship
was to launch a mass movement alongside with the present struggle
of the militant lawyers community.
The APDM had announced to boycot and a mass movement against
This alliance is not any more a right wing alliance dominated
by the religiousy fundamentalists. It was when formed in July
2007 when all MMA religious parties were part of it and PMNL was
the main leadership.
The time is running fast so is the political developments here
in Pakistan. The main leadership in APDM has gone over to nationalists.
These are not right wing nationalists but those fighting the national
exploitations in Baluchistan, Sind and Saraiki areas particularly.
They have successfully fought against the builiding the controversial
Kalabagh Dam during the lest few years of Musharaf dictatorship.
Most of the missing persons in Pakistan are not the religious
fundamentalists but are from nationalists parties or from Baluchistan.
Majority of the nationalist parties have been in the forefront
of democratic struggle since Musharaf had takjen over in 1999.
They have not made any unholy alliances during the years and had
been opposed to religious fundamentalists.
The APDM on 10th December is not at all the same as of July.
The balance of power is fundamentally changed in favour of radical
parties. There is no other alterntive political broad base plateform
opposition to the regime.
There is only one major religious party in the alliance. That
is Jamaat Islami. It is quite organised and have a large infratucture.
But the JI has no dominated position and neither they have tried
to bring the Islamic agenda on APDM plateform.
The issue of boycot or no boycot has resulted an ever increasing
split among the religious fundmentalist parties. That is a good
news. The MMA is split in practice. We must expose these forces
in pratice. The movement against military regime is something
that will even further split among these forces.
The main parties of the AJT are now also part of APDM. But we
are working to strengthen the Left alliance and not abondoning
it. The joining of APDM has given a chance to reach those layers
more closely who are in forefront in the fight against the military