Help us to put forward a credible
alternative to the politics of the rich
An Appeal to all friends in Social and
On 10 April 2010, Mian Abdul Qayum, a
labour leader in Faisalabad, has submitted his nomination papers as
candidate for the Punjab Assembly constituency 63 Faisalabad. The other
candidates from this constituency will be from Pakistan Peoples Party,
Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz and National Muslim League.
We need your support to contest this bye
Who are our opponents?
The seat was declared vacant when one Mian
Asif Ajmal resigned after it was clear during a Supreme Court hearing
that he has submitted bogus degrees to the election commission in 2008
to prove that he is a graduate. Asif Ajmal is an industrialist and owner
of a textile factory. He was arrested by police in 2008 after he and his
goons fired on workers of his textile factory when they were demanding
wage increase and union rights. One worker was killed and over a dozen
seriously injured. He spent nearly one and half month in jail at the
time but came out of jail using his political influence among police and
courts. He got elected in February 2008 election on a nomination of
Pakistan Muslim league Q, he later joined PMLN. Mian Nawaz Sharif has
nominated Asif Ajaml to contest this
seat. The person who used bogus degrees and deceived his constituency
and the election commission is awarded a ticket of PMLN, a party that
claim to defend democratic traditions fight for independent judiciary.
Pakistan Peoples Party Punjab president
Rana Aftab is once again in the field to contest election after he was
defeated in 2008 general elections. He has been member of Punjab
Assembly two times earlier. He is rich farmer and an advocate by
profession and die hard PPP activist.
Amjad Warraich, a former Member of
Parliament and leader of one National Muslim League, a new Muslim League
under his leadership, has
also announced to contest from this seat. His wife is member of National
assembly and his brother is in Punjab Assembly. There
is no end of gluttony within this family.
Labour Party Pakistan has decided to
contest the bye election of Punjab Assembly constituency PP 63. Mian
Abdul Qayum will be its candidate from the seat. He is chairman of
Labour Qaumi Movement and a member of LPP Federal Committee. We have
decided to contest this election to challenge the hegemony of the big
capitalist and feudal parties. We have not much experience of
parliamentary politics. The parliamentary elections in Pakistan favour
the rich and those with a lot of money. It is constituency based and
rich politician spends millions in violation of the election commission
laws and no one take notice of that. Despite all this, we have decided
to fight back.
Our candidate: Mian Abdul Qayum
Mian Abdul Qayum is a labour leader of
textile and power looms workers. He is the founding member of Labour
Qaumi Movement, a labour organization that has led many struggles of
textile workers in Faisalabad and surrounding area. Over 10,000 joined
when LQM organized a mass workers rally on the eve of the Labour Party
Pakistan fifth congress on 29 January 2021 at famous Dhobi Ghat ground
Mian Abdul Qayum, himself a textile worker,
has been able to organize LQM in every area of Faisalabad because of its
militant actions and solidarity expression with other movements. At
present, he works full time for LQM. Workers of Faisalabad textile
sector pay his expenditures. His partner Shamim Qayum is also an
activist of LQM and spends time to organize the women workers.
Mian Abdul Qayum has been arrested several
times during the last few years during the struggle of the textile
workers. He spent 28 days along 24 other power looms workers in Jhang
jail when he led a strike that lasted 20 days resulting in a complete
victory of power looms workers. Since LQM was established over 10,000
power looms workers have got social security cards. There was none when
the LQM was formed in 2003. They have been able to help workers in wage
increase, blocked payments were released, new trade unions in several
factories formed and in general a labour dignity is been restored.
LQM is an independent labour organization
supported by several left political currents and social organization and
movements. Labour Education Foundation, a radical social organization,
has helped LQM in trainings, workshops and organizing workers. Most of
its leaders are formally members of Labour Party Pakistan. LQM formation
is a departure from the traditional trade unions that have been unable
to grow during the last decade. It is community based labour
organization and not just a work place organization. LQM has combined
activism at work place and at community level. It
has formalized many informal sector workers. It has revived the real
workers tradition of picket lines at work place and at the homes of the
LQM strategy to press the demands of the
workers varies from case to case. It has held hunger strike camps,
public rallies, seminars, workshops, Gherao (pickets) of factories,
bosses homes, police stations and labour department, demonstrations and
many other forms of protests. It has held very militant but peaceful
Mian Abdul Qayum decision to contest
election against the parties of the rich is an important step in
promotion of working class politics. It will pave the way for more
independent actions of the working class not only in parliamentary field
but also outside. After the election of Mai Jhoori in Baluchistan bye
election last month, the contest of Mian Abdul Qayum will also be
watched closely by many in Pakistan and internationally.
Our election programme
Although this is a Punjab Assembly bye
election, we want to contest the election on a revolutionary programme
with transitional demands. In a meeting on 9th April
2010 at Labour Qaumi Movement in Faisalabad to discuss the priority of
the election campaign, it was decided to take up three issues
forcefully. They are price hike, labour rights and load shedding of
electricity and gas. One is directly linked with the lives of the
workers and the other is linked for the survival of the local power
looms industry and infrastructure. There has been a massive price hike
because of the conditionalityís of the IMF and World Bank loans. We will
take up the issue of neo liberal agenda and role of imperialism and
multi national companies. We will raise the issue of labour right to
form union and fight for workers right to decent life.
Importance of this election
This election is been announced at a time
when PPP government is taking very important decisions to implement the
neo liberal agenda. Price hike is out of control. Important
public sector institutions are on offer for sale. Infrastructure is
collapsing. The load shedding of electricity is for over 12 hours. Most
of the power looms are closed because of shortage of electricity and
thousands of workers laid off temporarily. The workers are very angry
and there is a possibility of a grand black lash against PPP government
through this election.
This is an area where workers have gathered
in thousands on the call of labour Qaumi Movement for defense of worker
rights and better job conditions. PPP Punjab president is in contest. So
workers have a choice of making a decision on the policies of PPP.
This is also an election where PPP and PMLN
have put up candidate against each other unlike the previous bye
elections. PMLN have nominated a person who has been involved in firing
cases, forgery of the educational certificates and other criminal
activities. Workers may reject the both big parties in this area.
A decent vote or a victory of a textile
worker in a bye election can generate a lot of enthusiasm among the
working class in Pakistan to go for an alternative choice than that of
parties of the capitalists and feudal.
This is the first parliamentary election
that LPP is contesting after 2002 general elections. LPP have done a
good street work against military dictatorship, for workers rights and
peasantís right to own land. The LPP can make a different in this
election if it gets the right support from its friends.
What can you do?
We need your support in different fields.
We have not much time left. The election is on 15 May 2010.
help us financially,
take off time to go the constituency. It is called PP 63 and it covers
the areas next to Faisalabad airport, Sadhar, Thekiwala, Pansera on
Jhang Road. Please come and help in the election campaign to go to door
help us in transport. If you have a car, small van or jeep, please lend
it to us with a driver for at least a week before the election campaign.
We have to cover a long distance area and we need a lot of
help in printing of literature, posters and leaflets. If you can get it
printed, we can provide you the text and designs.
help us in designing banners and help in printing on cloth.
give suggestion in promotion of our election symbol APPLE, the LPP
election symbol. We have taken a peaceful sign unlike the PPP and PMLN
who have very violent election symbols.
take a day off on 15 May to help on the Election Day.
suggest any other way to help us.
Please contact me for any help and I will
put you in contact with right persons involved in that area.
Labour Party Pakistan appeals to all its
supporters, friends, comrades and members to come forward to help in the
campaign of Mian Abdul Qayum.
Spokesperson Labour Party Pakistan