Privatization not in public interest: moot told

Karachi: In the developing countries the process of privatization is a tool of international capitalism to loot and plunder the national resources from the indigenous people, and this process in anti-human in its very nature, said the speakers of an anti-privatization moot.

They said that in past the victorious kings and emperors used to collect tributes from the defeated nations; however, today the underdog nations have to pay this tribute in the shape of very costly foreign loans and selling of their national organizations on dirt-cheap rates in the name of privatization.

The moot was organized by the National Trade Union Federation (NTUF) at the office of its Sanghar district chapter, attending by a large number of trade unions leaders and workers. It was presided over by NTUF Sanghar chapter president Comrade Behram Khan.

The speakers said that in whole world the privatization process has resulted in rising of costs and tariffs of public utilities and thus it has open the floodgates of poverty, price hike and joblessness. They said the shameful privatization of the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) is a textbook example of rise in utilities tariffs due to shoddy privatization of the state-run entities. They said the closure of the Karachi Circular Railway (KCR) and Karachi Transport Corporation (KTC) only benefited the private public transport mafia, which is also an indirect form of the privatization.

In Pakistan the rising tariffs of electricity, gas and other public utilities are the direct outcome of this anti-people privatization, said the speakers, adding the government is compelled to sell the national entities in the name of privatization due to the pressure of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank (WB). They said the international money lenders like the IMF and WB not only charge neck breaking interest on their loans but also use these loans as a foreign policy tool of the imperialist forces. They use these loans for arm-twisting of the poor nations.

They said in the whole world the pro-people governments have rejected the so-called economic progress model of the IMF and WB. These countries included China, India and Vietnam whose economies are on the rise, even without the crutch of the IMF and WB loans.

They rejected the proposed privatization of PIA, Pakistan Steel Mills, WAPDA and other state-run entities. They also opposed privatization of schools and hospitals and asked the government that instead of selling these public service institutions rampant corruption and nepotism in them should be controlled.

They demanded that the state-run entities that were privatized in past should be renationalized and mega corruption of ruling politicians during their questionable privatization should be probed.

The speakers included deputy general secretary of NTUF Nasir Mansoor, Home-based Women Workers Federation (HBWWF) general secretary Zahra Khan, Mir Hassan Mari, Sajida Kausar, Ghulam Rasool Chunar and others.