Establishment trying to reverse 18th Amendment: Rabbani

KARACHI: Senior political and socialist leaders, civil society, human rights, labour activists on Saturday paid glowing tribute to noted communist and Jam Saqi at a reference organised by the civil society and labour rights organisations of Sindh at the Arts Council Karachi.

Former Senate chairman Raza Rabbani; National Party chief Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo; Shah Mohammad Shah, Pakistan Muslim League-N Sindh president Rasheed A Razvi, former Supreme Court Bar Association president, senior columnist Zahida Hina, Shaheena Ramzan, Sajjad Zaheer (elder son of Jam Saqi), Naghma Shaikh from Democratic Students Federation,. Mahnaz Rahman from Aurat Foundation, Habibuddin Junaidi, convener, Sindh Labour Solidarity Committee, Sindhi nationalist leader Iqbal Tareen, Dr Riaz Shaikh, dean of social sciences, Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST); Syed Ahmad Shah, president of Arts Council of Pakistan Karachi; spoke on the occasion and eulogized his struggle for the rights of downtrodden people.

In his address, Senator Raza Rabbani lauded the role of Jam Saqi. He said that the establishment was trying to reverse 18th Amendment. “It will be a disaster,” he warned adding that Pakistan was created on the basis of federation. “If you try to weaken the federal character of Pakistan, the establishment will be responsible for all the consequences.”

He paid tributes to all political leaders who got passed the 18th Amendment. “Don’t open this Panadora’s box. Don’t add new factor of terrorism to already beleaguered society in Pakistan,” he warned, and added that any judicial or military martial law would be harmful to the country.

Rabbani said despite the fact that the education and health was provincial subjects, the federal government did not allow the provinces to make change to curriculum. “The Punjab government wanted to add Bhagat Singh, but establishment did not allow them doing so.” Similarly, he said there were more benefits of martial law than that of democracy in curriculum books in Sindh.

Mir Hasil Khan Bizenjo said that Jam Saqi remained committed to the democracy.

Shah Mohammad Shah said Jam Saqi remained committed to rights of poor’s and he was a true democratic leader. “All political parties aare united against any proposal to impose judicial martial law,” he added.

Rasheed A Razvi said Jam was a chapter of Pakistan’s politics. “He is a beacon of light for students, labour and political workers. He was a great student’s leader. I came close to him when a case of red flag was registered against him. Jam Saqi was against establishment.”

Dr Riaz Shaikh said Jam spent his entire life for poor people, and added that Jam struggled for the unity of the nation.

Published in Daily Times, March 25th 2018.