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Political Milestones



Abolish One Unit Movement:

A movement against One Unit was mobilised during the regime of military dictator General Ayub, that gained momentum after march 1967 and in March 1969 after the end of General Ayub’s regime General Yahya came into power and soon after he announced the termination of one unit. Shaheed Fazil Rahu throughout the movement was in the leading cadre of this movement.

Publish Voter List in Sindhi Movement:

General Yahya announced that he would hold general elections throughout the country. In the printing of voter lists, Sindhi language was deliberately ignored and none of the voter lists printed was in Sindhi. A movement was started against this in Sindh that went by the name of "Voter Listoon Sindhi Mei Chapyo Tehreek". In this movement many Sindhi youngsters and general public gave voluntary arrests and general Yahya had to kneel before the demands of increasing public pressure. Shaheed Fazil was one of the frontline leaders of this movement and he mobilised a large number of people to participate in this movement

Movement against Auctioning of Agricultural Lands:

Shaheed Fazil Rahu was the pioneer, catalyst and the person who brought this movement to a victorious end. In 1970 during General Yahya’s regime, millions of acres of agricultural land in the “Laarh” region of Sindh (Downstream of Kotri Barrage) allotted to the local farmers were ceased and put up for auction. It was a scheme to deprive the local natives of their ancestral lands and to hand them over to outsiders and military personnel. Shaheed Fazil Rahu started a movement by the name of “Neelam Band Karyo Tehreek” (Campaign against Auction) against this scheme of stripping the local farmers of their agricultural lands in which hundreds of political workers and local farmers were arrested including many women. Shaheed Fazil himself was arrested and imprisoned. He continued to direct the movement from prison that reached to a successful conclusion when Yahya’s regime took back the decision of auctioning the lands.

Save Sindhi Literature and Culture Movement:

During the democratic government of Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, censorship was imposed upon those Sindhi books and magazines that pointed out incompetence of government and highlighted the problems faced by the people of Sindh. The editors and writers of the magazines who held a conflicting opinion with the interests of the government were arrested and under these circumstances, Fazil Rahu started a movement for removal of censorship and bans from these magazines and for the release of journalists in imprisonment. Because of this movement, the censorship was removed and the journalists were released.

Arrest during ZABs Government:

Shaheed Fazil continued to protest against the exploitation of the labour class and the undemocratic acts of the government during the tenure of ZAB due to which he was arrested in 1976. An imprisonment that continued even after ZAB government was toppled.

Struggle against Union Texas Oil Company for the Rights of Indigenous People:

Union Texas Company ventured into Badin for oil exploration and extraction purposes. For this, they completely neglected the locals of the region and gave all the jobs and contracts to people from other provinces and regions. In addition, the land that consumed during oil exploration was not compensated for and the farmers and peasants got nothing in return. Shaheed Fazil mobilised the community against this injustice and compelled the oil company to give jobs to local people. Also due payments were made to the rightful owners for the land consumed by the oil company.

Movement against Press Censorship and for Freedom of Journalism:

General Zia on 5th July 1978 imposed censorship on press and put shackles on free journalism. He also banned countless magazines and newspapers. Journalists all over the country started a movement for freedom of journalism. In this struggle, many journalists were arrested and many accepted voluntary imprisonment. Shaheed Fazil supported their cause until the end of the movement and hundreds of his party members were arrested including his eldest son Muhammad Siddique Rahu who was subjected to brutal torture by Zia’s minions. This struggle also reached a successful conclusion with the removal of press censorship.

1983 and 1986 MRD Movements:

A democratic movement was started in 1983 against the brutal and relentless dictatorial regime. Shaheed Fazil was given the responsibility of organising MRD in interior Sindh. He worked day and night and addressed people everywhere from small villages to big cities. He united them and laid the organisational framework for MRD. It was the result of his untiring efforts, his organisational skill and the capacity to reach out to people from all the spheres of society that from Keenjhar to Karoonjhar, the whole Sindh became a united front against the dictatorial regime. No doubt, MRD is a monumental chapter in the history of retaliations against oppression by Sindh. During this struggle Shaheed Fazil was imprisoned along with other leaders of the movement but he was released long after the others in July 1986. Soon after his release, he started preparations for the second round of MRD that was initiated by Benazir Bhutto. This time he played his role by travelling all over the country and organising it on the national level.
Shaheed Fazil struggled tirelessly against dictatorial regimes, for restoration of democracy and for rights of people from all levels of society. From general Ayub to general Zia, every dictator kept him behind bars but he never compromised his commitment with democracy and the people. That was the reason why the forces of dictatorship and oppression considering him a threat for their interests decided to put an end to his life and on 17th of January 1987 Fazil Rahu was martyred.