By Jamil Junejo, Hyderabad, Sindh
Those oppressed nations are fortunate within whom different struggles and movements of different size and shape transform themselves into “National movement. Such transformation is not easy and simple task.
Therefore emergence of national movement into any nation is argument of safety of its existence, and is proof that its people have gained considerable national and political conscious. A nation loaded with the weapon of political conscious can wage the war of its existence till the last drop of its blood. Indeed “war is not win by victory” is said for such nations, for if you win them in one aspect, loose the war in an other aspect.
Sindhi nation is also fortunate which has a national movemet.Very after the emergence of Pakistan, Pakistani State begun to unleash vicious cycle of oppression and discriminatory attitude towards Sindh.Karachi was snatched from Sindh and made part of centre as capital of Pakistan.Sindh Assembly was dissolved when it resisted separation and passed the resolution for restoration of Karachi to its previous position. Unlimited Aligns were settled. In order to create space for them, Muslim-Hindu riots were maneuvered so as to compel Hindus to abandon their residences in their motherland and unwillingly migrate to India. Sindhi people actively resisted all these injustices and finally their resistance transformed into national movement when state made a bloody strike on Sindh in form of “One Unit”. Though Sindhi national movement begun right after the emergence of Pakistan and developed itself into mature form in One Unit era, but its beginning into crude shape has its roots in Pre-partition era. Its foundations were laid down by Sayed Ali Muhammad Shah Rashidi, Sibght-u-allah Shah Rashidi,and Allah Bux Soomro.They all (Allah bux Soomro little later) kept away from fastest flow of communal politics, which submerged even the greatest politicians like Gandhi and Quaid-e-Azam,and regarded such politics useless for the overall interest of Sindh, and discreetly assumed emergence of Pakistan as a tool for Punjabi Hegemony on Oppressed nations ,Pushto,Baloch,Bengalis and Sindhis.Rejection of communal politics at their hand gave rise to national Question and thus laid down foundations of National movement.
Causes behind the rise of National Movements in Pakistan.
1. The greatest tragedy with Pakistan is this it was created on the basis of Two Nation theory (Muslims and Hindus are two different Nations, there exist two nations in Hindustan, Hindu and Muslim). It was first and foremost negation from existence of the nations which joined Pakistann.Because Concept of Muslim Ummah simply meant that Pakistan is a Muslim nation, there isn’t any other nation into it. After the creation of Pakistan same legacy was perpetuated which yielded two negative effects. Firstly, All the nations existing into Pakistan were considered Muslim Ummah; Existence of nations existing into Pakistan was denied. Secondly, operation of Pakistan movement on the basis of Religious ideology, created space for mullah factor, and validated their existence in front lines of Pakistani politics. Because operation of Pakistan movement on the basis of Islam was an established fact the after its creations, so called custodian and protectors of Islam will consider Pakistan as their own property. And they did. They promptly supported the Negation of existence of national identities, made by “Punjabi-Panahgir vested interests”, and actively worked as ally of it. This overall phenomenon ultimately resulted in creation of National Question. Neither Punjab has any loss from such religious interpretation of Nation, nor it has any objection because, it served as best tool to legalize and perpetuate its exploitation and hegemony on Oppressed nations of Pakistan. It is argued that Quaid-Azam’s speech on 11thAugust 1947, made the interpretation of Pakistani nation on Political basis (which is also not acceptable to the oppressed nations of Pakistan) and rejected its religious interpretation. Agreed, but how can a single speech can change the phenomenon when entire Pakistani movement was operated on the religious interpretation of Nation, means Muslim constitute one nation.
2. Pakistan is federation, but unnatural. Therefore its ultimate and reasonable end is its degeneration through Strongest and decisive reaction of National Question, if Problem is not seriously and judiciously addressed. It is unnatural in two ways. Firstly, According to the international principle of successful federations, “Feelings of unity” among the federation is the basic requirement for succeed of any federation, which Pakistan lacks from very its creation.Secondly, Federation, Apart from a system, is name of contract which is based on “Mutual consent” Of federating units.Contary to it, Pakistan as federation did not establish on mutual Consent of all federation units.NWFP assembly in the leadership of Khan Abdul Gaffar Khan has passed resolution to join India. Through the Bogus Refrendum,NWFP was merged into yoke of Pakistani federation.Qalat and other baloch states were reluctant to join Pakistan.Sindh has joined it on the basis of promise made with it in shape of Pakistan resolution “ Federating Units will be independent and Autonoums”,which was soon broken after creation of Pakistan. Similarly Bengalees has joined Pakistan on the basis of same promise. Instead of Converting unwillingness of federating units into willingness, State begun to splash salt on the wounds on federating units excluding Punjab. Very after the creation of Pakistan, in 1948, Karachi was snached from Sinsh, was made capital of Pakistan and part of Federal government.Sindh Assembly resisted this move. As a result it was dissolved. Millions of Migrants were forcibly settled in main cities of Sindh.Sindh whose national Identity was already denied, was deprived of even provincial identity through Imposing “One Unit”.Similiar kind of Outrageous Behavior was adopted towards Bengalees, Baloch and Pakhtoons. Nouroz Khan, who begun to champion the cause of his nation’s interests, took up weapons,and climbed the mountains, was made to come down on the basis of false promise. He was humiliating paraded in the streets of Qalat.Many Baloches were ruthlessly fired to death by army.
Despite the fact that Bengali was culturally and literary richest language than other languages of Pakistan, and was language Majority, Urdu was made National Language of Pakistan. When United Front gave sweeping defeat to Muslim League in 1954’s Provincial Assembly Election in Begal, “Punjabi-Panahgir vested interests” unhesitatingly dissolved it. Looking the first constituent Assembly of Pakistan leaning towards the demands of Bengal, it was urgently dissolved. This looks sufficient to prove my notion that Federation of Pakistan is unnatural, For its doest comply with the internationally established principles for creation and succeed of federation, that is “feelings of unity” and “mutual consent” among the federating units. More ever, when Pakistan is unnatural federation, and Constituent units are meted out such outrageous,oppressive and discriminatory attitude, it becomes the established fact that its ultimate and reasonable end is degeneration through direct and indirect effects of National Question, if serious steps are not taken to Solve the national Question.
Problems with National Movement of Sindh.
Now a question arises, despite so much matured dynamics of National movement of Sindh, why has it not been up to the mark. To me, the most significant reasons behind it are as following:
1. National Parties of Sindh have been,by and large, failing to transform ideological maturity into organizational shape. On the many occasions, viz, One Unit movement, Movement against dictatorial regimes of Yahaya, Ziya and Musharraf, Sindhi nation has exhibited much matured ideological strength. But Our National Parties could not convert such maturity into required organizational shape. Such failure has given two type of losses to the national movement of sindh. Firstly, maturity and strength of national conscious, gained at different occasions mentioned above, became weak after the end of each movement. Because it is organizational shape which make ideological maturity to sustain and maintain its strength for long time. Without organizational shape ideological maturity can not give required results. It is organizational shape which converts national ideological maturity into concrete form and gives it material strength. Secondly, Failure of conversion of ideological maturity into organizational form have been facilitating un-national powers to eat the fruit of movements launched by Sindhi Nation on the different occasions. The fruit of Anti-Ayoub,Yahya and MRD movements was ,by and large ,eaten by PPP.
2. PPP has been continuously giving great loss to National Movement of Sindh.PPP in the leadership of Bhutto had given three type of losses to the national movement of sindh. Firstly, Till the decade of 70’s National conscious in Sindh has developed to considerable level. Emergence of Bhutto on Political landscape, Converted such national conscious into federal parliamentary conscious, through his feigning look of Sindhi, and Sindhis well wisher.Secondly, after the defeat in Bengal 1971, all the anti national elements of Establishment has lost their credibility and strength.A Fertile ground was provided for highest progress of national movement the its ultimate victory. It was Bhutto who blew fresh soul and strength into their being.Resultantly,Establishment with fresh strength begun to oppress democratic forces generally and block the ways of national movements of Pakistan including Sindh’s particularly. Thirdly, Bhutto in allaiance with Establishment maneuvered Partition of East Pakistan which served as serious blow to all the national movements of Pakistan including of Sindh.
3.Although,Bangladesh,then Eastern Pakistan was numerically in majority than all other provinces,but yet was oppressed nation like Sindhi, Baloch, and Pakhtoons. Its existence in Pakistan was a balance between anti- national and pro- national powers. National movement of Bengal which has richest roots of literally, cultural, and political movements, was a great support and sign of hope and courage for other national movements of Pakistan. Its Separations served as great loss to all the national movements of Pakistan.
4.Healthy and serious difference on ideological lines, and way of work, and ultimate formation of different national parties is not bad phenomenon. .But irresponsible culture to unreasonably differ with others on petty problems and make new parties neutralizes national movements. National Movement of Sindh is also confronted with this problem.
5.National parties of Sindh have always been adopting compromising behavior towards PPP in its Government. Such typical mind set has given loss to the national movemet.We mistakenly begin to think of PPP as our own party and slowdown momentum of national movement. We feel a particular type emotional and psychological barrier to resists anti Sindh steps of PPP to the required level. We do resist, but not to requiring level. It was PPP which planned separation of Bengal, did we resistt to required level? It was PPP which legalized through 1973 constitution the exploitation and plunder of natural resources of Sindh at the hands of Punjabi-Panahgir vested interests. It was PPP in whose government Chashma, Jehlum link canal begun to flow, Population was fixed single indicator for division of NFC award.It was PPP which for the first time in 1988 accepted muhajirs as nation. There are innumerable anti sindh stories of PPP.We never resisted all these moves to required length. Kindly note that I don’t say that national parties of Sindh did not resist, they resisted but not with required intensity to required level. Consequntly, Sindh’s national movement has been retrogressive rather than progressive in every government of PPP.