ISLAMABAD, April 22: Bilawal Bhutto Zardari Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party has condemned the decades-long atrocities, torture, arrests and cases against the peasants of Okara military forms and asked the authorities to stop treating the peasantry as conquered or occupied folks and restore their genuine rights over the farms land.
PPP Chairman was talking to a delegation of the Okara farms peasants led by former MNA and President PPP Okara Sajjadul Hassan, who called on him in Islamabad Friday.
Bilawal Bhutto recalled that his mother and former Prime Minister Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto had been raising the issue of barbarities against the peasants to force them to cede their rights over land and even the women and children were not spared in brutalities.
Registration of cases against 4,000 peasants besides other strong-arm tactics against the farmers is a worst attack on the innocent farmers and the PPP, together with the toiling masses, won’t tolerate such brutalities against our own fellow citizens, he stated. “The world observed April 17 as International Peasants Day, but it is ironic that here in Islamabad the peasants were not allowed to take out a rally on the day and they were subjected to torture and pushed behind bars,” he added.
PPP Chairman said those who are trying to convert Okara military farms into bonded labour camps should not forget that Pakistan is an independent and sovereign country governed by the law of the land any attempt to continue injustices against them would be vehemently resisted by entire nation.
He expressed solidarity with the peasants of Okara farms and assured them that PPP would continue to raise voice against the brutalities they are being subjected to at every forum. PPP Chairman also criticized registration of cases under 7, Anti-Terrorism Act against the peasants and demanded immediate release of all the arrested peasants including seven women.
Bilawal Bhutto Zardari demanded that all the genuine demands of the peasants should be accepted without any delay and judiciary should also step in to remove the injustices against them.
Party Chairman also directed the Peoples Lawyers Forum to extend all possible legal aid to the jailed peasants of Okara farms.