A new beginning for the Marxists in Pakistan

Today, December 3, the comrades of Lal Salaam, the IMT in Pakistan, gathered for their first congress since the split in The Struggle group. On the first day of congress around 260 comrades were present from all over Pakistan.Tomorrow, on the second day, more comrades are expected to arrive, especially worker comrades who will not be at work.

Comrades arrived from far off areas of Baluchistan, including Gwadar where the Chinese have built a big deep sea port, members of the Executive Committee of the Baloch Student Organisation and students of the Pushtoon Student Federation; from the ship-breaking yard in Gadani, near Karachi; a big delegation of over 30 from Karachi; delegations from Hyderabad and Dadu in Interior Sind; the biggest delegation was from South Punjab, with ten textile workers from Bahawalpur and students from universities in Multan, Bahawalpur and students from DG Khan; textile workers along with students from the Agriculture and GC universities from Faisalabad; a delegation of teachers, students and workers from Gujranwala; students from the Islamic International University of Islamabad and workers from the Ordnance Factory in Wah; a delegation from Pushtoonkwha consisting of students from Peshawar and Malakand universities, along with workers from the Electricity Department, the Teachers’ Union and others; a big delegation from different parts of Kashmir, including students and workers; and the host region Lahore had a big participation of students from the UET of Lahore, the University of Lahore, the Punjab University of Lahore and others, along with Young Doctors, Electricity workers and workers from other departments.

The first session was on World Perspectives with comrade Fred Weston of the International Secretariat of the IMT giving the lead off. Comrade Claudio Bellotti of the Italian section of the IMT, Sinistra Classe e Rivoluzione, also spoke in the session. Comrades Aftab Ashraf, Ajmal Rashid who had come from Durban, South Africa to attend the conference, and comrade Karim Parhar also contributed to the discussion. There were also many questioned posed to the speaker. Fred Weston summed up the discussion.

IMG 0105In the afternoon, after the lunch break, comrade Adam Pal led off on Perspectives for Pakistan. Comrades from the different regions participated in a lively discussion, along with many questions posed to the speaker, Adam Pal. The congresses divided up into commissions on Trade Union work, Youth work and Work Amongst Women.

Comrade Paras Jan made a very effective financial appeal, raising about $500, which is a big amount considering the level of wages in Pakistan and the high levels of unemployment.

We will provide a more detailed report in the forthcoming days, but here we want to provide a taste of the congress with the pictures included in this article.

(Lahore, December 3, 2016)

Lal Salaam congress 2016