Monday, April 2, 2012

Major Ishaq Mohammad: We who were killed in dark pathways

A Rare pic of Comrade Major Ishaq Mohammad.

Major Ishaq Mohammad was imprisoned for four years along with Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Syed Sajjad Zaheer in the hitherto unresolved 1951 Rawalpindi Conspiracy Case. Syed Sajjad Zaheer, Mohammed Hussain Ata and Faiz Ahmed Faiz were communists of varying degrees. So was Major Ishaq Mohammed, but at that time they were time he was still a beginner.

Later, of course, Major Ishaq became a symbol of militant left-wing politics in Pakistan. He as a fearless man and used to vehemently even with the judges of the Tribunal. Once, after an exchange of heated words, Justice Sir Abdul Rahman thundered: "I will set you right", to which Ishaq boldly replied: "Go ahead, my Lord!" The Justice could then only mutter, "I pity you". Ishaq and Ata were both hot-tempered and indulged in blistering polemics when discussing politics in jail.

Ishaq Mohammad gained immense popularity during the 60's and 70's as a leader of the Mazdoor Kissan Party. He led the peasant revolts of Hashtnagar and was well-known for his militant  stand against capitalism and landlordism. Arrested after the military coup of General Zia-ul-Haq, he suffered from paralysis during his imprisonment. Despite his ill-health, he refused the military government's offer for medical help provided he tendered an apology. Defiant till his last breath, he bade farewell to this world in 1982.

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