Unprecedented Success of All India Workers’ Strike

The Communist Party of India (Marxist Leninist) Liberation [CPI (ML)] General Secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya congratulated workers for the unprecedented success of the All-India General Strike called by the central trade unions on December 14. The CPI (ML) participated in massive state level bandhs in Assam, West Bengal, and Jharkhand, while in the states of Bihar, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and Pondicherry successful and militant ’Chakka Jam’ was conducted and Party workers courted arrest in large numbers. The CPI (ML) mobilised thousands of agrarian labourers and peasants in the strike, protesting against the corruption and non-implementation of the NREGA and against SEZs, under the banner of its Khet Mazdoor and Kisan Organisations. In West Bengal, the Party workers rallied against the acquisition of farmers’ land in Singur while in Jharkhand, despite active opposition and disruption by Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), Congress’s trade union, and Bharathiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS), Bhartiya Janata Party’s (BJP) trade union, work in the entire Coal Belt was paralysed. In Assam thousands of tea workers participated in the strike while in Uttar Pradesh, workers took out protest marches in several districts.

Unorganised workers participated in large numbers too. The message of this strike has been driven home — a total negation of the anti-worker, anti-people policies of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government and the Party heartily congratulates workers and peasants for this.

The All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), CPI (ML)’s trade union, congratulated the working people of India for making all-India general strike a success. The working masses and the toiling people of the country have once again shown their resolute resistance to the anti-worker, pro-corporate, pro-MNC policies of UPA government. This was the second all India general strike called by the sponsoring committee of central trade unions against the policies of UPA government.

In West Bengal (WB) AICCTU specifically raised the issues of repression on the peasants of Singur and participation of information technology (IT) workers in the strike condemning the stand of WB Chief Minister Buddhadeb to “keep IT sector out” of 14 December general strike. Led by AICCTU, thousands of workers courted arrest/demonstrated at several places including states like Assam, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Orissa, Pondicherry, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh (UP), and Gujarat.

AICCTU along with CPI (ML) and its other mass organisations played a leading role in organising a successful ‘Chakka Jam’ and ‘Bandh’ in several states like Jharkhand, Bihar, Assam, Orissa and Pondicherry. Unorganised sector workers particularly agricultural and construction labour participated in large numbers against the constant betrayal by the central government on the issue of bringing bill for their social and job security despite promise of the same in common minimum programme. In Bihar CPI (ML) members of legislative assembly (MLAs) boycotted the assembly. In Delhi, a “Save DTC” rally of Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) employees was held from DTC headquarters to Delhi Secretariat. This apart, AICCTU played a leading role in organising a strike in industrial areas of Patparganj, Jhilmil and area of Narela and Noida.

In Ranchi, workers led by CPI (ML) State Secretary Suvendu Sen, All India Agricultural Labour Association (AIALA) National Secretary Janardan Prasad and MLA Vinod Singh courted arrest. National highway remained blocked for several hours here. Similarly, GT Road was blocked at Bagodar. In Jamshedpur CPI (ML) central committee member Rajaram and AICCTU leader Om Prakash led the court arrest. Several districts including Garwha, Kodarma, Dumka, Latehar, Devgarh, Ramgarh, Lohardagga, and Gumla witnessed complete Bandh. In all around 2000 activists courted arrest throughout the state. Rail roko was organised in Barwadih.

In Bihar, ‘Chakka Jam’ was organised by AIALA in Bhojpur and many other districts, in which agricultural workers participated in large number. Arrah town observed complete bandh. In Gaya and Bhagalpur, thousands of construction workers observed strike and took out rallies. In Patna an impressive rally of construction workers and state govt. employees was held ending in court arrest at Dak Bunglow Chowk. In Bihar Sharif, a rally of Bidi and construction workers was held. The state government employees in Bihar and Jharkhand went in support of the strike. The torch light processions were also held on the eve of the strike at many places including Patna.

Unions affiliated to AICCTU picketed at six points in Pondicherry. Road block and rail roko was also organised. The liquid petroleum gas (LPG) Bottling plant remained closed. Construction workers also observed strike. Workers held out a rally in Bangalore and at HP Halli at Bellary in Karnataka. In Gangawati a demonstration was held.

AICCTU organised rallies in several cities including Lucknow, Anpara, Robertsganj, Kanpur and Allahabad in UP. The road was blocked in front of LML factory in Kanpur.

In Sabarkanta district in Gujarat AICCTU played a leading role among ceramic industry workers and Ambuja group company. A dharna was also held at the collectorate.

The Maharashtra Rajya Sarva Shramik Sanghthana organised successful strike in sugar industry, in several factories and Municipalities in 4 districts. Agricultural workers also participated in strike in large numbers. An impressive rally was held in Jaipur by AICCTU along with other central TUs. Thousands of brick-kiln, construction and agricultural workers stopped work and took out rallies at several places like Bhikhi, Moud (Bhatinda), Mansa, Sunam (Sangrur) and Ludhiana in Punjab. A dharna was held at secretariat in Port Blair in Andamans.

P.S.

* From ML International Newsletter, January-February 2007. An update on news and ideas from the revolutionary left in India.
Produced by: Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation international team.

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