Equality without Justice
Public Speech at Mansehra,
April 20, 1970

You will recall that during the Ayub regime I came to Mansehra. Our party was a new party at that time. We didn't have much support. There were no capitalists or landlords with us. Ours was a new party, which had come into existence against big odds. We didn't have many resources at our disposal. Ayub Khan wanted to destroy our party. He was the dictator of the country and had everything at his command. He had government servants, the police and the army at his beck and call. The capitalists and the landlords also sided with him. He had the support of Basic Democrats. We had promised you a struggle against the dictator. That was the wish of -the people and we carried it out. The situation in the country was alarming at that time. I had given my word in Mansehra that we shall form a popular party which would stand by the people. This promise has been fulfilled. You can compare the achievements of this party with other parties. You are well aware of the fact that other parties did not face up to dictatorship. It was only when the dictator had been defeated, when the elephant was wounded and brought down that these insects came out of hiding and started boasting about their struggle against dictatorship. The people know who was with them in the struggle.

My dear brothers, we had promised that we shall together fight against dictatorship. Prior to that I had promised you an independent foreign policy when I was Foreign Minister of the country. I fulfilled both these pro­mises. Now, my third promise is that we shall establish Islamic equality in this country. This simply means that we shall end poverty, hunger and misery in Pakistan.

My dear brothers, our party stands for three principles. Our first principle is 'Islam is our religion' for which we are prepared to sacrifice our lives. If we did not have Islam dear to our hearts and if my heart was not full of the Islamic spirit how could I have faced the Indians in the Security Council? This is a Muslim country. It came into being because we are Mus­lims. When this country came into being and when Quaid-i-Azam struggled for it, where were the people who are now declaring that Islam is in danger? They were not with Quaid-i-Azam. They were against him. In fact, they were with Gandhi, Nehru and Patel who were the enemies of the Muslims.

During British rule and the struggle against the Congress, these gentle­men supported the Congress and the British, not the Quaid-i-Azam. When we were fighting against the enemies of Islam, they did not declare that Islam was in danger. It is now that they have come to realise that Islam is in danger. After the establishment of Pakistan, Islam appears to be in danger to them. How can Islam be in danger in a country where the Muslims are in majority? Do you feel any danger to Islam in Pakistan? Where is the danger to Islam? Who has advised them against offering prayers or reciting the Holy Quran or to give up their religion? Islam cannot be in danger under any circumstances and anywhere because it is an eternal religion.

Please don't fall prey to false propaganda. Our opponents have nothing solid to say against us. They opposed Quaid-i-Azam and supported the Hin­dus. They cannot now concede to you that they are the people who actually exploited you and stood in the way of your progress. Of course, they themselves have prospered but they have ruined the country. For you they created miseries and inflicted poverty upon the people. They have betrayed you during the last 23 years which is not a short period. Every nation aspires to be free during her slavery because it wants to prosper and progress. The progress of a nation means the betterment of the lot of the common man. In Pakistan, the majority of the people, the workers and the farmers are becoming poorer every day. Our opponents who are responsible for this state of affairs and have exploited the common man will never accept the responsibility for their misdeeds. They can only try to cover their exploita­tion behind the slogan of 'Islam in danger.' They never can explain how Islam is in danger.

We do not want any foreign system to be introduced in Pakistan. We do not stand for the Russian, the Chinese, the British or the American system. We want a Pakistani system. We shall serve the cause of Islam and enable the Muslims to prosper. Today, Muslims are dying of hunger. The prices are up and income down. Bribery is rampant. The situation is worsening. How can the cause of Islam be served under these circumstances? We want to serve the cause of Islam by enabling the Muslims to prosper and progress. We want the children of the poor to be educated. We want to establish hospitals for the treatment of the poor. We want to provide housing for the common roan.

Of course, we want that a constitution should be framed, but we have tried two constitutions already. We will again frame a constitution but a constitution cannot by itself satisfy the hunger and the need for education. If you do not have anything to eat you cannot eat the constitution. If you have nothing to wear, you cannot wear the constitution. The constitution cannot give you employment or housing or education. It cannot be a substi­tute for a mill, a house, or a school or a hospital. It is only a fundamental law.

We stand for this fundamental law, but it alone cannot solve problems. The two constitutions tried during the last 23 years could not do it. A third constitution will be framed because it is a legal requirement. There is no difference of opinion or conflict in so far as the question of constitution-making is concerned. We all believe in democracy in politics. We have struggled against dictatorship because we want to establish the people's rule. We all want a constitution, but at the same time we want to eradicate poverty and hunger from the country.

Other countries have constitutions and democratic systems and they have also made progress. We want it too. Our country has not progressed because of a corrupt system which gave monopoly to a few capitalists. Unless capitalism is controlled the country cannot progress. We want Islamic equality in the country which simply means equality of opportunity. It does not mean that everybody will be of the same physical stature and shall have the same colour of the skin. It only aims at bringing to an end the disparity in the opportunities available to the people. If my son has a right to education, a poor man's son also has the same right.

This is equality, Islamic equality. This is the message which Islam gave to humanity. It was our religion which gave the principle of equality to the world. Please study the life of the Holy Prophet and the lives of the Khulafa-e-Rashedeen. This was the object of Islam and that was why it spread from one corner of the world to the other, from Europe to Asia, because it stood for equality. Now when we demand equality in accordance with our religion, our opponents say that it is against Islam. How can it be against Islam? If it had been against Islam, Quaid-i-Azam Mahomed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan, who was the greatest opponent of the British and the Indian National Congress, would not have desired to establish Islamic equality. Was he an enemy of the Muslims of Pakistan? He had declared that Islamic Socialism would be established in Pakistan. If our opponents are not against democracy, why are they against socialism? They use many English words like 'dictatorship' and 'constitution'. If we use the English word 'socialism' for musawat, why do they take exception to it? There is no parliamentary system in Islam for which alone they are clamouring. If parlia­mentary democracy is not against Islam, socialism, too, is not against Islam.

We haven't invented a new term. It is not a creation of our imagination. It was the Quaid-i-Azam who first used this term. Later, Liaquat Ali Khan also used this term. You can study the books of the Quaid-i-Azam, the Quaid-i-Millat and Allama Iqbal. You will find that this word has been used by them. There is nothing new in it. It is the sayings of the Quaid which we want to follow. There are many other Islamic countries where the system of Islamic equality prevails. Are they all 'kafirs'? Islamic Socialism has been adopted by Algeria, Egypt, the Sudan, Libya, Iraq and Syria in their own respec­tive ways. Similarly, we shall have to adapt it in Pakistan according to our circumstances. Just as these countries continue to be Muslim, Similarly we shall also remain a Muslim state Because we are a Muslim people .The cry of 'Islam in danger' is a mere slogan of the capitalists' agents. These people are the stooges of the capitalists and they want to protect their interests. They have done nothing during the last 23 years. They have only served the cause of the capitalists who established mill after mill in the country. What is the plight of the people? Islam will be served only if the people of Pakistan, who are muslims, are served. This is going to be our endeavour.

Our party stands for three principle is that Islam is our religion. We stand for democracy because it brings in people’s rule. We stand for everything which has popular supports. Our politics is the politics of the people. We are with you and we shall always be with you. We will ever betray you. Our politics is not the politics of Ayub's Round Table Conference. It is not the politics of the old politicians who have failed you, who never came to you, who never asked your opinion. They confined them­selves to their drawing-rooms and framed their constitutions without the consent of the people. We declare that we have no right to sit in round table conferences and decide the fate of the people. The people will themselves take their decisions which will be valid. This is the reason why our party has gained immense popularity in the three years of its existence. You know we are not going to betray you and that we do not make false promises. I promised to give you an independent foreign policy. I fulfilled that promise and gave the coun­try a foreign policy which was free from all shackles. Even my opponents praised this foreign policy. Our previous policy was that of the capitalists who were the stooges of the imperialists. That is why they framed a policy which served the interests of the imperialists. We brought this to an end and gave the country a popular foreign policy. We were with you and served your cause.

Later, we called upon you to struggle against Ayub Khan and join bands with us. I said this when I was last in Mansehra. We fulfilled this promise too and by the Grace of God and with your help defeated dictator­ship. We also promised to fight against India bravely and we did fight against India bravely. Now I am giving you my word that we shall give you a constitution and establish a democratic system, but our special effort-will be to end the system of exploitation and capitalism. I am sure that you want to live an honourable life. You struggle hard because you are all workers. You are reaping your wheat harvest these days. You work day and night. You have every right to enjoy the fruits of your hard work. It is against justice that the wealth produced by you should be usurped by some other people.

This system needs a change, otherwise the very existence of Pakistan will be in danger. You can never prosper unless this system is changed. Poverty and hunger cannot be eradicated unless the system is changed. The capitalists are conscious of the fact that we have launched a popular movement. We are not afraid of them. We are with the people and we shall lead them to the promised goals. Whatever we say is in accordance with the will of the people. That is why they are afraid of my speeches. If I had spoken in Sanghar heavens would not have fallen, but they tried to prevent my speech in Sanghar, It is because I speak the truth, because I represent the common man's feelings.

We have a popular programme. You will see that I do not criticise any party in my speeches. I do not attack anyone personally while my opponents have been speaking against me. They have been abusing me, but I have refrained from telling you all! I know about them. Let them utter all the lies that they want. You have two parties here in your area led by two Khans who carry on personal attacks against each other. We are not concerned with their accusations and counter-accusations. We are concerned with our own programme. By the way, how many Muslim Leagues are there in the market? And how many NAPs? Strange are- these people that while they criticise us, they continue to be divided themselves. This is only increasing our power and it will go on increasing because we have presented a practical programme according to the needs of the hour. Their watches stopped in 1950, but they want to serve the people. You can imagine the type of service they are capable of rendering.

Our party is your party because you have formed it and supported it. People from Karachi to Khyber are with this party because we talk of their problems. We shall never betray them, just as we have never betrayed them in the past. We have served them. Therefore, they are with us. Please strengthen the hands of this party because it is your party. If any harm comes to this party, your interests will be harmed. We want that your children should receive free education as far as possible, as far as our resources permit. The wealth and resources of the country are in the hands of 22 families at the moment. Unless this situation is changed, you cannot progress and you cannot be provided with everyday needs. We are not against private property. Those who say that we will abolish all private property, the small shops, the small factories and small land-holdings, are totally wrong. This is baseless propaganda.

What we want is that the big businessmen, the capitalists who own innumerable mills, should be subject to curbs and the people at the lower rung of the ladder should go up. That is our objective. We have given our programmed in a written manifesto because we are not making false promises. We could very well say that we shall confiscate all property, but this is wrong. It will be against Islam, against the interests of the country. We do not want this. We only want to nationalize large factories and mills. Their wealth will be used for establishing schools and hospitals. Unless this is done, the equality of Islam cannot be established. We have proved that equality is not against Islam. These people who are afraid of us, who are afraid of the awakened masses, who do not want a change in the abominable status quo, are leveling these false charges at us. They are the people who proclaim that there is no equality in Islam. They say that there is only justice in Islam. I say, what does justice stand for? Justice stands for equality. It is no justice that one individual should own thirty mills while another should starve. An equitable distribu­tion of wealth is in accordance with the principles of justice. This is the only programmed and objective before us and with your support we are going to achieve it.




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