It was the darkest and saddest day in the history of Pakistan's labour movement when more than 300 workers were burned alive in Karachi on Tuesday, September 11, in the country's most severe garment factory fire accident.
The accident was not the first one in this factory, or in other factories. Unsafe working conditions are an everyday phenomenon, which go unnoticed until the most heinous crimes finally capture the media limelight. This week, more than 300 workers lost their precious lives at the alter of capitalist greed and lust for profits.
The Pakistani society is so criminally brutalized that in a sense no-one heeds the voices and cries of the downtrodden until uncalculable damage and the unimaginable miseries are inflicted upon them. The same is the case for workers at Ali Enterprises, a garment factory at Hub River Road in Karachi's SITE industrial area. The zone is the site of a couple of previous fires in which no government agency took any stern action.