May 1: How Should We ‘Observe’ Labor Day?

Posted on May 1, 2011
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Economy & Development, Society
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Adil Najam

Today is May 1. The 125th international Labor Day. Even before anything has actually happened, newspapers and TV anchors are telling us that the ‘nation’ will ‘observe’ the day in a “befitting manner.” Great predictors of the future that our media is, one is at least thankful that they are not promising that we will all ‘celebrate’ the occasion – there is not much to celebrate in the plight of labor in Pakistan. There has never been.

We are told that there will be rallies and processions and speeches and and discussion and renewed pledges. All very good. Thank you. All very useful, I am sure, for those in whose name we will pontificate today.

Maybe, an alternative way to ‘observe’ Labor Day today might be to just observe those who labor around us. On this one day, let us make those who are forever invisible to us, visible.

To observe their labor – in respect, in awe, in shock, and maybe even in shame!

(P.S. The picture above was taken in Karachi yesterday, April 30, 2011).

13 responses to “May 1: How Should We ‘Observe’ Labor Day?”

  1. Z says:

    Gone are the days of Bhutto. Imran is the only one who can be called a leader because of his integrity and vision. Rulers in whole of the history have hardly considered labor force as fellow humans and in Pakistan even public looks down to those who work with their hands. May 1 is another day to admit our mistake individually and accept the dignity of labor.

  2. Naveed Abbas says:

    “Gandum ameer e shehar ki hoti rahi kharab…… Beti kisi Ghareeb ki faaqon say marr gayee”. Wish labours prosperity forever. Happy Labour Day!

  3. Faisal says:

    The answer to your question is – it depends. It depends on where you are. In US it is a day of rest which marks the beginning of NFL season. In UK it is called May day for some reason but again it is just a holiday. In Pakistan, a minimum wage bill in NA would be a good start. MQM listening? Other than MQM and Imran (who is not in assembly today) no other party in Pakistan would ever do this.

  4. Gardezi says:

    Well said, Sir: “let us make those who are forever invisible to us, visible.”

  5. Eidee Man says:

    Who will lead these “befitting” processions? People who haven’t worked an honest hour in their lives!

    Seriously, do you think Zardari, Gilani, Sharif brothers, etc have ANY idea what it means to earn a salary/living, let alone one in horrible, abusive conditions.

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