Communist Party of Pakistan

Communist Party of Pakistan
کمیونسٹ پارٹی آف پاکستان
Chairman Jameel Ahmad Malik
Founder Sajjad Zaheer
Founded March 6, 1948 (1948-03-06)
Split from Communist Party of India
Headquarters Central Secretariat, 1426-Fateh Jang Chowk, Attock Cantt, Pakistan
Ideology Communism,
International affiliation International Conference of Communist and Workers' Parties
Colors Red

The Communist Party of Pakistan (CPP) (Urdu: کمیونسٹ پارٹی آف پاکستان) is a communist party in Pakistan.


The CPP was founded in Calcutta, Union of India on March 6, 1948. A decision was taken at the Second All-India Conference of the Communist Party of India, which was held in Calcutta at that time, that a separate communist party ought to be created in the new state of Pakistan. It was thought that Pakistan, being a relatively small country (in comparison to India) and suffering from instability, was ripe for revolution. The delegates from Pakistan separated themselves and held a separate session where they constituted the CPP. Sajjad Zaheer (founder of the All-India Progressive Writers Association), from West Pakistan, was elected General-Secretary. The delegates from East Pakistan elected an East Pakistan Provincial Committee. Many Muslim leaders of the CPI were sent to Pakistan to help with the formation of the party.


The attempt to start a revolution in Pakistan failed and the CPP leaders were jailed. In the 1951 Rawalpindi Conspiracy Case, many leading members were convicted and the party was forcibly repressed by successive governments.They have never been successful since[1]


Diplomatic intervention by Jawaharlal Nehru led to the most prominent CPP leaders being freed and sent back to India. At this stage the CPP was in poor shape in West Pakistan, while in East Pakistan the party had a limited foundation. However, it was difficult to have a unified underground political organization spanning such a vast geographical territory and the East Pakistan branch was able to operate with autonomy.


In the provincial elections in East Pakistan in 1954, the CPP supported the United Front launched by the Awami League, Krishak Praja Party and the Nizam-e-Islam party. Four out of ten CPP candidates were elected, and 23 CPP members were elected as candidates of other parties.

In 1954 the party and its front organizations such as the National Students Federation, Progressive Writers' Movement and Railway Worker’s Union were banned. As a result, the CPP launched the Azad Pakistan Party (APP) in West Pakistan with Mian Iftikhar-ud-Din as leader. In 1957, the CPP and other leftists created the National Awami Party as a legal party. The APP merged into the NAP.

In East Pakistan, the CPP worked within the Awami League and then in Ganatantri Dal. In 1958 the Kull Pakistan Kissan Association (All Pakistan Peasants Association) was launched.


In the mid-1960s the US State Department estimated the party membership to be approximately 3000.[2] The CPP also began to organize themselves abroad. In Europe, the CPP branch published the Urdu magazine Baghawat, which translates as "rebellion".

In 1966 the Sino-Soviet split reached the CPP. In East Pakistan a pro-Chinese group broke away from the CPP. At the fourth party congress in Dhaka in 1968, a decision was taken that a separate communist party should be formed for East Pakistan. Thus the Communist Party of East Pakistan (CPEP) was founded. The CPEP later became the Communist Party of Bangladesh.

The CPP organized a militant and armed peasants struggle in Patfeeder, Baluchistan. The CPP resisted the autocratic regimes of the times, and built up militant trade union movements.


In December 1990 Jam Saqi became general secretary of the party. In April 1991, he resigned from the party.[3] In 1995 the CPP merged with the Major Ishaque faction of the Mazdoor Kissan Party to form the Communist Mazdoor Kissan Party (CMKP). The CPP accepted the criticism that they had been too uncritical towards the Soviet Union. In 1999 a group broke away and reconstituted the CPP. In 2002, the CPP split, leading to the existence of two separate CPPs, one led by Maula Bux Khaskheli and a splinter group led by Khadim Thaheem.


Decades after when the Communist Party of Pakistan was banned in July 1954 on charges of plotting to overthrow the government and crackdown against its leadership throughout the country, now once again the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) [4] has registered the Communist Party of Pakistan led by its Central Chairman Engineer Jameel Ahmad Malik and Secretary General Mehraj Gul Khattak with election symbol as Sickle. The Communist Party of Pakistan is registered under the Article 17 of the Constitution of Pakistan, 1973 as reported vide [5] Pakistan Today dated January 14, 2013.

Electoral performance

See also


  1. "Socialist Pakistan". Archived from the original on 2008-04-10. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
  2. Benjamin, Roger W.; Kautsky, John H.. Communism and Economic Development, in The American Political Science Review, Vol. 62, No. 1. (Mar., 1968), pp. 122.
  3. "Pakistan Christian Post". Pakistan Christian Post. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
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