Alia Amirali

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Alia Amirali
عالیہ امیرعلی
BornNovember 5, 1984
Occupation(s)Lecturer, Feminist, Political worker, Former Deputy General Secretary, Punjab unit of Awami Workers Party (2016–2019)
Notable workFounding member of Women Democratic Front

Alia Amirali (Urdu: عالیہ امیرعلی; born November 5, 1984) is a Pakistani left-wing political worker and academician working on issues of gender and political participation. She has been working as Deputy General Secretary for the Punjab National Unit of Awami Workers Party in Pakistan (2016–2019). She is also a lecturer in Gender Studies at Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad.[1] She is a PhD candidate at London School of Economics, Gender Studies department.[2][3]

Early life and education[edit]

Amirali is daughter of Pakistani activist and physicist, Pervez Hoodbhoy and Hajra Ahmed,[4] niece of renowned philosopher and intellectual Eqbal Ahmed.[5] Amirali was born in Islamabad and got early schooling from Khaldunia High School, Islamabad. She did her Bachelor's in Liberal Arts from Hampshire College, USA in 2006. She did M.Phil in anthropology from Quaid-i-Azam University in 2010. She is enrolled in PhD program at the London School of Economics and Political Science.[3]

Political beginning[edit]

Amirali has been attending political rallies and demonstrations since her early age. According to an interview, she said that she got involved in organizing in the local anti-war effort in 2001 during the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan. She went abroad for college between 2002 and 2006, and returned to Pakistan in between during the climax of the Okara peasants’ movement, which had resurfaced at the time. Ever since she has been involved in different movements like Katchi Abadi Alliance (protesting evictions of informal settlements in Islamabad).[3][6]

Awami Workers Party[edit]

Amirali was initially associated with a political group known as "Peoples’ Rights Movement" which later merged with other Left parties leading to formation of a new political party in Pakistan, called Awami Workers Party. Amirali worked as an active political worker of AWP Islamabad-Rawalpindi unit and served as deputy general secretary of Punjab AWP.[3][7]

Women's political organizer[edit]

Amirali mostly worked with the women among student, peasant or the slum dweller[8] communities and tried to give political voice to their invisible existence.[3] She has worked extensively for women's participation in politics.

Women Democratic Front[edit]

Amirali is a founding member of Women democratic front[9][10] saying that women, regardless of whether they are elite or non elite, need to struggle in a country like Pakistan where patriarchy is so entrenched and public spaces are so male dominated.[11]

Student rights[edit]

Amirali was responsible for the upsurge in student activism after a long hiatus.[12][13][14][15][16]

National Students Federation[edit]

Amirali was also the General Secretary[17] of National Students Federation Punjab[18][19] from 2008 to 2012.[20][21][22][23] NSF remained inactive and without a formal organisational presence in Pakistan between the late 1980s and when it was reactivated in the late 2000s, with Alia a major factor in the mobilisation of young people in general, and students in particular during and the anti-emergency protests of 2007. The NSF later merged with other student organisations to become the Progressive Students Federation.[24][25][26][27]

Conferences and seminars[edit]

She has been a speaker at multiple panels and conferences. She was a speaker at the Socialist Alliance 9th National Conference at Green Left Weekly 2013 Fighting Fund, Australia.[28] She has also been guest speaker at IDRAC, Habib University[29] where spoke of the different movements, as well as the lack of representation of the largest and most exploited section of labour-women. [30]

She has been working as a lecturer and researcher for a number of years.


She has published "Balochistan : a case study of Pakistan's peacemaking praxis"[31] in which she explored and analysed why many peace processes failed and how the state penetrated into the province of Balochistan.[32]


  1. ^ "Working Class Power & Feminism: An Interview with Alia Amirali – New Politics". Newpol. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  2. ^ "People". London School of Economics and Political Science.
  3. ^ a b c d e Society, LSESU International Development. "LSESU International Development Society".
  4. ^ "Alia Amirali: Change Agent in a Stuck Society". Open Source with Christopher Lydon. Radio open sourcE. 17 August 2011. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  5. ^ "Stop dirty propaganda against the Pride of Pakistan Dr. Pervez Hoodbhoy..." Let us build Pakistan (LUBP). 24 December 2008.
  6. ^ "Working Class Power & Feminism: An Interview with Alia Amirali – New Politics". New politics. new pol. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  7. ^ Wiemann, Dirk (1 November 2019). "The Essence of Politics is Collective". Hard Times. pp. 27–35.
  8. ^ Abbasi, Kashif (25 February 2022). "Islamabad's 10th Avenue project to displace dwellers of 1,400 slum houses". DAWN.COM.
  9. ^ "Leadership". Women Democratic Front. Archived from the original on 2019-10-11. Retrieved 2019-10-19.
  10. ^ "Women's Democratic Front launched to build a vibrant, socialist and a feminist movement". Daily Times. Daily times. 9 March 2018. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  11. ^ "Working Class Power & Feminism: An Interview with Alia Amirali | VOICES | Tanqeed". tanqeed org. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  12. ^ ""Students Movement leaders remembered: Revival of student activism termed must for reshaping society" – PPI report". Dr M. Sarwar (1930-2009). 16 January 2010.
  13. ^ "Activists march for students rights, secularisation of curriculum | The High Asia Herald". April 14, 2019.
  14. ^ "Alia Amirali: Change agent in a stuck society «". August 16, 2011.
  15. ^ "Alia Amirali: Change Agent in a Stuck Society". Open Source with Christopher Lydon. 17 August 2011.
  16. ^ "Rethinking Pakistan's Political Economy".
  17. ^ "Freedom to co-exist: Activists gather to reclaim public spaces for women". The Express Tribune. 2 November 2015.
  18. ^ "NSF brings 'national' back into national reconciliation | Pakistan Today".
  19. ^ Reporter, A. (17 May 2014). "Students, workers protest enforced disappearances". DAWN.COM.
  20. ^ Menon, Meena (4 February 2014). "A debating group in search of politics". The Hindu.
  21. ^ "Attabad Lake: Protesters demand release of political activists". The Express Tribune. 4 January 2012.
  22. ^ "Labour Day rally: Workers vow to revive labour movement". The Express Tribune. 1 May 2014.
  23. ^ Report, Dawn (18 March 2015). "Protesters condemn attack on churches, lynching of two men". DAWN.COM.
  24. ^ "NSF convention". The Express Tribune. November 27, 2011.
  25. ^ Ahmad, Mahvish (28 April 2012). "Hazara killings 'Divide and rule policy prevents unification'". DAWN.COM.
  26. ^ "Pakistan: Student movement applauds new left merger; lead activist to visit Australia". Green Left. 6 September 2016.
  27. ^ "Survey Politics and the Representation of the 'Youth' | Tanqeed".
  28. ^ "Pakistan: Student movement applauds new left merger; lead activist to visit Australia". Green Left Weekly. green left. 6 September 2016. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  29. ^ "Habib University". Habib University. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  30. ^ "Working Class Power & Feminism: An Interview with Alia Amirali | VOICES | Tanqeed". Tanqeed. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  31. ^ Amirali, Alia. "Balochistan : a case study of Pakistan's peacemaking praxis /". Stanford searchworks. Retrieved 12 October 2019.
  32. ^ Amirali, Alia (2015). Balochistan: a case study of Pakistan's peacemaking praxis. Worldcat. OCLC 897510592. Retrieved 12 October 2019.