KARACHI: Chief Executive of Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER) Karamat Ali and General Secretary of Pakistan Peace Coalition B. M. Kutty have expressed grief and sorrow on sad demise of former UK cabinet minister and a veteran leader of the British Labour Party Tony Benn, who died at his home on Friday at the age of 88.
In a statement issued here on Sunday, they regretted the death of veteran left wing campaigner, writer and orator of workers’ rights, who renounced his aristocratic title of the Lord and contested elections for the House of Commons instead of sitting the unelected House of Lords. He was instrumental to change the law to allow hereditary peers to renounce their titles. Thus in 1963, due to his campaign the bill was passed. Then Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilson made Mr Benn industry secretary in 1974 but moved him to energy secretary a year later.
He served the House of Commons for half a century till May 2001 and left the parliament to “devote more time to politics”. When he stepped down from parliament to devote his time to the active politics, by then he was the longest serving Labour MP in the history of the party, which he joined in 1942.
M/s Karamat and Kutty in a message to the family of Tony Benn have praised Benn’s services for workers rights and democracy and said he was instrumental in abolition of the monarchy and British withdrawal from the European Union. He was He tireless warier against the multinational corporations and a fierce opponent of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, a ceaseless campaigner for democracy and a hero of the socialists and working-classes.
In a condolence message to Stephen, Hilary, Melissa and Joshua, the family members of Benn, they paid rich tributes to services of Tony Benn for the welfare of workers and upholding the democratic norms. They prayed for rest of the departed soul in eternal peace and give fortitude to the family to bear this irrecoverable loss.