The first ever convention of Pakistan Peoples' Party was held at Lahore on November 30, 1967. It was in this meet that the Party was founded, by a unanimous decision of the attending delegates. Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (who was elected Party's first Chairman on December 1, 1967) in his key note address to mark the occasion said, "Looking back upon the twenty years of our national existence, we find that tension has been added to tension, problems have been heaped upon problems, frustration has been raised to scaring heights, while nothing at the base has found a settled level." He remarked, " I have often wondered why we as a nation should have to live in this state of perpetual uncertainty. Do we take it as a natural phenomenon? Let us look at other countries. Many have had to tackle a host of fundamental problems, which most have been able to solve successfully. Once the basic problems had been settled and left behind, such countries have then devoted their attention to problems of a different nature. We, on the contrary, find ourselves unfortunately more or less on the same spot as before- with fundamental problems unsolved - in the state of suspense." "The root cause of this immobility lay in the fact that fundamental national problems had never been referred to the people at any time. The people alone could finally settle the issues. No individual held a special mandate from God to lay down the law for the people of Pakistan, it was people who had struggled for their ideological objective the creation of Pakistan, and whose welfare was at stake and they only could determine the final nature of their state and government. The continuing crisis and suspense was the result of denying the people the possibility of deciding their future themselves." "We are living in a monstrous economic system of loot and plunder which the regime lauds as free enterprise. Pakistan Peoples' Party stood for social justice, based on the principle that the means of production should never be allowed to become means of exploitation of the masses. In accordance with this principle, the ownership of all key industries should be vested in the people. All the basic industries should be nationalised and the public sector should include banking, insurance, transport, the production of electrical energy, fuel resources and the exploitation of the mineral wealth of the country. The Social Economic Programme would quicken the pace of economic progress, which was being actually hindered by unrestrained monopolist capitalism such as exists in Pakistan." I have reproduced four paragraphs from Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's speech to make out the point that the Pakistan Peoples' Party of today is being pushed towards disaster by the undemocratic forces and pressures from the market forces, operating the world over to spread the tentacles of economic imperialism. It took twenty-two years to reach a point where the Party stalwarts have started to ridicule Party's guiding principals (in practice, if not in speech) of creating a classless society through application of socialist ideas to realise economic and social justice. The objective of the Party to transform Pakistan into a socialist society in conformity with the aspirations of people has become a joke today. Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto refused to submit to this pressure and hence, was made a "horrible example." He was not only thrown out of power by the army guards but was hanged. Then Benazir Bhutto Shaheed decided not to be a part of the conspiracy to do away with Pakistan; She was murdered in the day light by the anti-people and anti-Pakistan forces. It was in 2004 when she told me on my question that the USA had decided to do away with Pakistan and she was the only hurdle in its way. "They may go to any extent in that case", I enquired, and she replied, "Yes, They can kill me as they killed Papa. But I am ready for that. I can sacrifice my life for Pakistan." And she did sacrifice her life. The new co-chairman of the Party Mr Asif Ali Zardari who has been elected the President of Pakistan, faces the same threat but he has to live with that, that is the price one has to pay in this country for doing people oriented politics. Pakistan Peoples' Party is the only ideological political party of Pakistan. An ideological party is meant to guide and lead the people and not to be led astray by the attraction of expediencies of the moment. In the foundation meeting document No 5 it has been said that the ideology of Pakistan is indisputably rooted in the religion of Islam. The declaration of Principles relates only to the political and economic matters that concern the nation. It has been clearly mentioned, " The aim of the Party is the transformation of Pakistan into a socialist society in conformity with the aspirations of the people. Two guiding principles stipulated were: A) An egalitarian democracy, that is a classless society; and B) The application of socialist ideas to realise economic and social justice. It was said that in dealing with many complex problems for which it will be expected to find solutions, the Party must be careful not to be led astray by the attraction of expedience of the moment. It will never go wrong if it acts in the light of the two Guiding Principles, of which the first relates to the objective and the second to the method. Pakistan Peoples' Party laid down the following Programmatic Principles: 1) The constitutional structure must be of the Republican Pattern of Government responsible to the directly elected representatives of the people; 2) Universal Adult Suffrage for both sexes; 3) Scrupulous regard for Human Rights. The Civil Liberties must be fully protected, especially: a) Freedom of the conscience, b) Freedom of the expression in speech and writing, c) Freedom of the press, d) Rights of assembly, e) Right of free association. 4. The peasants and the working class must, as producers of the 'national' income, enjoy the full fruits of their labour. All agrarian and industrial programmes must be directed towards the welfare of the labouring masses of the people. 5. Nationalisation of finance and key sectors of industry in order to: a) Promote rapid industrial progress; b) Eliminate the exploitation of the people by the privileged few; and c) Eradicate foreign interference in the internal affairs of Pakistan. 6. Agrarian measures to abolish exploitation of the cultivators by the remnants of the feudal practices. Positive steps to organise the peasantry in self help groups and co-operatives. 7. Strengthening of the trade unions. The right to strike is inalienable. Implementation of the ILO principles. 8. Fixation of minimum wages. 9. National health services for peasants and workers and progressively for all sections of the population. 10. Mobilisation of the masses. 11. Abolition of illiteracy. Education must be directed to the formation of a classless society. 12. Promotion of the cultural life of the people. 13. Rapid development of the state language to replace the employment of an alien language in the conduct of the affairs of the country. Full opportunity for the cultivation of all regional languages. 14. Equal rights for women. 15. Separation of executive and judiciary. Independence of judiciary. 16. Annulment of archaic laws. 17. Academic freedom and autonomy of the universities. 18. Mobilisation of the youth for nation building purposes. 19. Right of peoples' participation in national defence. In his book If I am assassinated Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto wrote, "The political blunder I committed was that I tried to strike a balance between the two classes. And now while sitting in my death cell, I have come to the conclusion that only one class will rule Pakistan and that is the proletariat class and that is not very far away." That is the will that Shaheed Bhutto left for all of us. Benazir Bhutto Shaheed was a visionary leader who knew what was in the offing, that is why she twice tried to save Pakistan by striking compromises with the stooges of imperialism. But when she concluded that it was not possible to live with the situation, she decided to fight back with the power of the people and chose to die instead of bowing before the mighty imperialist power itself, or its lackeys at home. In August/September 2006 the third principle of the Party "Socialism is our economy" was replaced by "Social equality is our economic goal." I wrote a letter to Shaheed Bibi arguing with her on the issue. I stressed on retaining the original principle. She agreed with my thesis and sent me her reply, which I would like to share with my readers. In her letter to me, dated September 4, 2006, she says: "Thank you for bringing to my attention the importance of retaining 'Socialism is our economy' in our manifesto and in our principle. I will look into it and ensure that it does not happen again." She reiterated, "Socialism is our economy" in her messages on two occasions after that, November 30 (Party Foundation Day) and the January 5, 2007 (Shaheed Bhutto's Birthday). Today we are passing through a very critical phase in our national history. Being the only ideological party in the country at the moment, Pakistan Peoples' Party is looked up to by all to play a pivotal role in taking the country out of current quagmire. But this is not an easy task and hardly possible without the Party going back to its basics, the founding principles. Future lies in remembering and revisiting the past. Let today be the day of resolve... let today be the November 30, 1967 The writer is a central committee leader