PAKISTAN, May 1 — May Day was celebrated in its historic manner but now the working class here is full of fury. The May Day marches sent a loud and clear message to the Pakistani bosses that workers won’t stand for miserable conditions. These demonstrations proved that the working class is the strongest power in the world if it decides to fight.
This year workers’ chants were more radical, their slogans more revolutionary, filled with red ideas, signifying they know who’s responsible for all their hardships. The opportunist, fake-left trade unionists were surprised at this anger and realized they’re losing control. When one May Day procession was transformed into a huge meeting in one town, the sellout union “leaders” rushed to sit on the stage but a group of workers pulled them down, saying you have no right to sit there. These chairs are not for people like you with your expensive cars, homes and clothes; they’re for the workers wearing torn cloths, living in miserable conditions with worn hands from hard work and tiring labor.
Price hikes, unemployment, layoffs, closed plants, shortages of electricity and gas, rising poverty levels, terrorism, anti-worker laws, lack of the free medicines in government hospitals, lousy schools, the increasing gap between poor and rich, privatization, corruption, nepotism, target killings, racism and fascism — all this confirms that the bosses have nothing to offer us as they shift their bank accounts to Switzerland, the UK and the U.S.
Puppet trade unionists tortured airline workers on strike at Pakistan International Airline (PIA) but workers’ actions proved they can win despite this and state oppression, in PIA and on the Railways.
Electricity and gas shortages stem from corrupt government officials getting commissions from private contractors in exchange for privatization. They spend billions to import power plants but no electricity is included in a national grid. In most cities there’s no electricity for 12-18 hours. In villages it barely lasts for the blink of an eye. This affects the daily lives of all wage workers.
The May Day marches also signified that the political parties are just playing a shell game, while they exploit the workers, trying to keep the decaying capitalist system alive. Most are either capitalists or feudalists, both organizing cartels to increase prices; landlords increase rents while never increasing the workers’ wages. From this they reap trillions.
Our Party is still very small but communists are painstakingly committed to revolution, capable of organizing strikes, demonstrations, marches, shut-downs and sit-ins. On May Day, our comrades and friends succeeded in winning more and more workers to these celebrations. We made plans to increase participation, distribution of Party literature and what to discuss. In big and small cities we gave out the pamphlet “Why We Fight for Communism” and leaflets about May Day, related to the workers’ miserable conditions.
In our speeches, our comrade and friends explained our politics and gave reasons why we struggle directly for communism and why we need to build an international communist party. We showed how all other political parties support the imperialist drive for profits and how the politicians are mouthpieces of international fascist capitalism. In Pakistan the ruling class is hiking the electricity tariff, directed by the International Monetary Fund, while the World Bank has recommended termination of all subsidies won by the working class.
Comrades and friends also emphasized that the bosses are living in luxurious homes while workers have no shelter. Even dwellings made of mud and leaves are being demolished; landlords and the government prevent them from occupying the lands “that don’t belong to them.” Police attack workers forced to spend nights in parks and are accused as “terrorists” so accusers can get rewards. The rulers ride in bullet-proof cars under heavy police and army escort while workers are killed in terrorist attacks.
The different racist, nationalist and fundamentalist parties enable target killings of poor workers just because of their language, color or sect, even if they have no tie to any party — all this to create fear and to prove their power!
The bosses need cheap labor for maximum profits so they’re making education more expensive. Therefore, working-class children can’t go to school while bosses force them into child labor. Such children get 35¢ to 47¢ for 12 hours. This child labor helps the phony unionist-led NGOs get money from the International Labor Organization.
These fake trade unionists are a tool of different political parties; they use them to avoid strikes, sustain bad working conditions and low wages. We’ve got to get rid of these “pocket unions” to make any advances. Low wages, no insurance, long working hours, layoffs, no benefits, no security, and no pensions or any other assistance if injured or killed — all pushed by these opportunist and puppet unionists. We must organize ourselves under the true communist leadership of PLP to build a base in these small fights to be able to win workers to see the need for international communist revolution.
Our comrades’ speeches are warmly welcomed by the workers, to huge applause. Many workers rushed to our comrades to obtain their contact numbers soon after they finished the marches and speeches. During all these activities we make good contacts. Now it’s our task to convert these contacts into recruits to the rank-and-file of our Party. We are confident we can win millions of workers to struggle to establish a classless society under the red banner of our international revolutionary communist party — PLP