[Marxism] Protest meassages needed! Pakistan: Arrested, tortured for assisting climate change victims

glparramatta glparramatta at greenleft.org.au
Thu Sep 15 00:46:02 MDT 2011


*[Urgent: Please send messages calling for the release of Baba Jan and 
his comrades to farooqtariq at hotmail.com 
<mailto:farooqtariq at hotmail.com>. Farooq Tariq will be a guest speaker 
at the Climate Change Social Change activist conference 
<http://climatechangesocialchange2011.wordpress.com/> in Melbourne, over 
September 30 to October 3.**]*

By *Farooq Tariq*

September 15, 2011 -- /Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal/ 
-- Baba Jan, a federal committee member of the Labour Party Pakistan 
(LPP), has been taken from jail ... and the Inter Services Intelligence 
(ISI) is torturing him on the name of investigation", fears the LPP. 
Baba Jan, surrendered himself to an "anti-terrorist court" in Gilgit 
Baltestan last week, had been on the run since July 2011, after police 
opened fire on a demonstration demanding compensation for those affected 
by the Atta Abad Lake floods last year, killing two.

Baba Jan's "crime" was that he organised rallies and demonstrations 
against the police killings.

The LPP has issued an urgent appeal for messages to protest against Baba 
Jan's detention. The judge sent Baba Jan to prison on judicial remand. 
"He was dragged out of jail by the intelligence agencies", alleges the 
alert. The Labour Party Pakistan demonstrated today at Islamabad 
National Press Club and has planned more demonstrations across Pakistan.

Instead of arresting the police officers involved in the deaths of the 
two activists, police registered 16 charges against Baba Jan and others. 
They arrested at least 36 activists, among them 10 members of the Labour 
Party Gilgit Baltestan. Baba Jan escaped arrest and was sheltered by the 
community; after a month underground, he decided to surrender. 
Currently, six activists including Baba Jan remain under arrest, facing 
charges that many know to be fabricated.

Baba Jan joined the Labour Party Pakistan in 2004 and was elected to the 
LPP federal committee at its congress in Faisalabad in 2010. Previously 
one of the main leaders of the Peoples Youth, he had left the Pakistan 
Peoples Party (LPP) youth wing to join the LPP and organised the 
Progressive Youth Front (PYF) across Gilgit Baltistan, the northernmost 
province in Pakistan.

Baba Jan was among the first to raise the issue of the Atta Abad Lake 
and toured Pakistan in 2011 to organise rallies and demonstrations to 
highlight the plight of villagers who have lost their homes to this 
newly formed lake caused by deforestation, soil erosion and climate change.

He spoke to the national media in press conferences held in Lahore, 
Karachi and Islamabad.

The corporate media finally took up the issue and some compensation was 
paid to the victims, however a new movement began to urge compensation 
for all affected, as some had not been compensated. When the police 
opened fire on the July protest, killing two activists, Baba Jan and his 
comrades took up the case.

The Labour Party Pakistan appeals to all human rights organisations, 
political parties, trade unions, youth and peasant organisation raise 
their voices to save the life of Baba Jan.

For more information, please contact Ihsan Ali, president of the Gilgit 
Baltistan High Court Bar Association and member of LPP federal committee 
(03462524792), or Nisar Shah, general secretary Labour Party Pakistan 
(0300 2147960). Please send protest messages to Farooq Tariq at 
farooqtariq at hotmail.com <mailto:farooqtariq at hotmail.com>.

For more background, please see

http://links.org.au/node/2490



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