(originally posted on Daily Times)
By Faizan Ali Warraich
LAHORE: Tahira Mazhar Ali was a lifelong activist who advocated for the rights of underprivileged class, marginalized class and working class, despite having chance to enjoy aristocratic feudalistic class privileges she switched and knitted knot with working and middle class’ speakers said
They said in a reference seminar held at South Asian Free Media Association to pay tribute to the pre-eminent lead figure of left movement Tahira Mazhar Ali Khan who passed away on 23 march of this year. On the occasion human right activist Hina Jilani said that Tahira Mazahar Ali lived with the liberal and progressive ideas and ideology, moreover her thoughts were contemporary and she never wasted a single moment of her life to raise rights of the underprivileged class of society. She said she left the aristocratic-club of privileged class and became fighter to advocate rights of the marginalized class. She sadi Tahira opposed military intervention in East-Bengal, now Bangladesh.
Secretary General SAFMA and editor of South Asian journal Imtiaz Alam while talking said that Tahira Mazhar Khan was the veteran leader of the left wing movement and she led more than anyone else. He said her ideology is non-sectarian and non-communal which advocated for giving rights to the working class. Imtiaz Alam said even In the times of dictatorships, those left movements who didn’t got divided were Anjuman-e-Jamhooriat Pasand Khawateen Democratic Women’s Association (DWA) which she created in 1950 and The progressive writers’ association always raised the voice of the working class.
Tahira wanted a democratic and progressive Pakistan, she was among those people who objected the imposed narrative by the state and initiated the debate on role of civic-military relation, whether Pakistan should be authoritarian state or secular or a religious or a democratic country’ he added. Moreover, military regimes damaged mostly the left wing movements. He said today’s left wing leadership and comrades needed to evaluate whether those issues were resolved for which Tahira Mazhar Ali and people of the left was been fought like rights of the working class, minorities, women, children, environmental issues etc. IA Rehman human right activist said on the occasion that she was labeled as ‘grand old lady of the left wing movement’. He said Tahina and her husband Mazhar Ali khan were interconnected.