KARACHI-A Mehnatkash Aurat Rally here on Wednesday, on the occasion of International Women’s Day demanded to abolish all anti-women laws and fix the minimum wage at Rs50000 per month.
As per details, a big rally of women workers was arranged by Home Based Women Workers Federation (HBWWF) led by their central general secretary Zehra Khan. It marched from Fawara Chowk to the Arts Council of Pakistan. Thousands of women workers belonging to different parts of Sindh participated in the rally including women Haris, labourers and office workers. Besides women leaders of political and social parties and transgender also attended the rally, carrying banners and placards inscribed with their slogans and hoisting red flags. They chanted slogans in favor of their demands.
Rally leaders in their speeches said that the capitalist economy has made the women wage slaves. Gender-based discrimination, economic and environmental degradation has hit them hardly. They said that the struggle for freedom of women is basically the part of the war against capitalist dominance.
They said that the ongoing economic crisis in Pakistan has badly affected the women and children. About 20 million women and children have been pushed beneath the poverty line and it is feared that 10 million more women would go beneath the poverty line by the next year. The rulers on the behest of International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB) has made the policies to reduce the real income of workers by sixty percent. Price hike has increased by forty percent and daily use commodities have already gone beyond the reach of the common man. A huge hike in the prices of petroleum products have made the life of citizens a living hell. Education, healthcare, electricity and gas expenses have been increased from 100 to 300 percent. The State is not discharging its constitutional responsibilities and instead of reducing non-development expenses subsidies for citizens are being ended.
They said that amid this economic crisis, forced sacking of workers from factories and workplaces are affecting most the women workers. For millions of women workers, earning opportunities in formal and informal sector are diminishing fast. In industrial sector, particularly textile and garment sector, hundreds of thousands of women are working as salaried slaves.