Communists celebrate May Day in Pakistan with revolutionary enthusiasm

Like workers all over the world, the working class of Pakistan also celebrated May Day 2024 in a period of unprecedented crisis of global capitalism. Already weak and backward, capitalism in Pakistan is in a deepening crisis. The ruling class and the state are becoming ever-more vicious and are conducting an economic massacre of the Pakistani working masses at the behest of global imperialist lending institutions like the IMF.

[For more reports, visit the website of the communists in Pakistan,, and the social media accounts of the Red Workers Front]

The ruling class is afraid of a backlash of the workers and is expecting huge movements. As such, an unannounced ban on rallies and protests was in place, and union leaderships were intimidated and threatened on May Day and asked to abandon the gatherings. In some cities, like D.G.Khan, a state of emergency was imposed to curb the rallies, while in other cities, administrations tried to curb the protests and rallies.

On the eve of May Day, the ruling class resorted to brutal attacks on the farmers of the country in the most ruthless manner. Half of the population in the country is linked with agriculture, and the ruling class is hell bent on ruining it. This year, the government is not buying wheat crops from the farmers due to massive corruption surrounding wheat imports. As such, the farmers are being forced to suffer despite having produced a bumper crop.

The government has thrown them to the mercy of private vultures, who are fleecing the farmers with extremely low payments for their crop, thus destroying their livelihoods. On the eve of May Day, farmers were protesting in several cities, with the police baton charging and arresting them.

The government is meanwhile attacking workers, subjecting them to wholesale privatisations, mass layoffs and ending pension benefits, while energy prices spiral, leading to the closure of local industries. In this situation, Pakistan has become a living hell for its working class. Poverty, inflation, and unemployment have risen to previously unseen levels. But like their working-class brothers and sisters all over the world, workers in Pakistan are also preparing to resist and fight back. This was evident from the way workers celebrated May Day 2024 all over the country.

Communists celebrate May Day

On May Day 2024, revolutionary activities and poster campaigns were held by the communists of Red Workers Front (RWF) in more than 30 cities across the country, either independently or in collaboration with various trade unions and workers organisations.

These cities include major proletarian centres, such as Karachi, Hyderabad, Lahore, Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Peshawar, Quetta, Islamabad, and other cities like Mirpur Khas, Tando Adam, Noshehro Feroz, Tando Jan Muhammad, Darro, Tando Muhammad Khan and Kandhkot (Kashmore) in Sindh province, D.G.Khan, Muhammad pur Dewan (District Rajanpur), Bahawalpur, Lodhran, Bhakkar, Taxila/Wah Cantt and Rawalpindi in Punjab province, and Loralai, Gwadar, Dalbandin in Baluchistan and Buner, Gilgit city, Rawlakot and other areas.

Besides these activities, the communists of the RWF also intervened in many May Day protests and rallies held by various trade unions all over the country. They made revolutionary speeches, raised slogans, distributed leaflets, and sold the monthly Worker Nama, receiving a very warm response from the workers.

The activities held under the banner of the RWF included workers’ seminars, protest rallies, roadside protests, study circles and literary activities.

A massive protest rally was held in Landhi industrial area of Karachi, in which around 300-400 industrial workers showed up with their demands. Union leaders and workers participated from different industries in the area, including General Tyres, IIL, Merit packaging and several others.

In Quetta, a protest rally and workers assembly was held in collaboration with the Pakistan Workers’ Federation, in which a large number of public sector workers of the city participated.

Quetta Image RWFA meeting held jointly between the Pakistan Workers' Federation and the RWF in Quetta / Image: RWF

In Bahawalpur a protest rally was held in collaboration with the union of the Public Works Department in which around 200 public sector workers and textile workers participated (see below).

Bahawalpur Image RWFComrades of the RWF organised a 200-strong protest of public sector workers in Bahawalpur / Image: RWF

In D.G.Khan, a meeting of workers was held at the union office of the Public Works Department.

DG Khan Image RWFWorkers at an RWF May Day meeting in D.G.Khan / Image: RWF

In Lahore, an anti-privatisation workers’ seminar was held in Lahore Press Club. At the seminar, union leaders from the Professors and Lecturers Association, Sheikh Zaid hospital, Electricity department, Education department and others participated and vowed to speed up the struggle against privatisation.

 Lahore Image RWFRWF comrades at the May Day events in the Gajjumata industrial area of Lahore / Image: RWF

In Rawat industrial area of Rawalpindi, a roadside protest was held in which workers from various industrial units of the area participated.

A protest rally was held in Peshawar industrial area in which public sector and industrial workers participated.

In Faisalabad a workers meeting was held in the PMC colony of the Allied teaching hospital.

In Gujranwala, a rally was organised in the city centre jointly with the Union of Water and Sewage Authority WASA in which more than 200 workers participated.

An anti-privatisation workers’ meeting was held in Bhakkar, at which workers from various parts of the public sector participated, particularly from public health, the electricity department and education sectors.

Bhakkar Image RWFHealth, education and electricity workers met in Bhakkar / Image: RWF

A protest rally was held in Rawlakot city, Kashmir in which a large number of public sector workers and local people participated.

In Gilgit city, a motorcycle rally and a protest were held at the main crossing of the city.

Gilgit Image RWFComrades organised a motorcycle rally and protest in Gilgit city / Image: RWF

In Hyderabad, a workers’ meeting was held at the press club in which public sector and industrial workers participated.

Literary programmes around May Day were held in Gujranwala and Taxila/Wah (see below), in which poets and short story writers participated and presented their works.

In all these activities, held under the banner of RWF, as well as raising the immediate demands of the workers, we held discussions on the history of the working-class movement, the global crises of capitalism, the economic and state crises of Pakistan, the character of imperialism, the ongoing Israeli war on Gaza, the need for a revolutionary communist party, the educating of the workers in communist ideas, and the character of socialist economic planning and what a workers’ state would look like. Moreover, the current problems confronting the labour movement in Pakistan and the way forward were also discussed.

Buner Image RWFWorkers march behind the RWF banner in Buner / Image: RWF

Lorelai Image RWFComrades of the RWF and Balochistan Labour Federation organised a rally in Lorelai / Image: RWF

In order to fully propagate all these discussions among the advanced layers of the working class, a large number of leaflets were distributed among the workers, calling for the preparation of a general strike. A special issue of the monthly paper Worker Nama was also published. 6,000 May Day posters were printed and were pasted across industrial centres, and in the busiest parts of more than 30 cities across the country.

Along with workers, young communists and students also participated in May Day activities with boldness and enthusiasm. These young communists also released a revolutionary song, “Sun Le Tu”, especially for May Day which was well received by the workers.

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