(I prepared this document to organize trade union movement under BAMCEF umbrella while I was active in Bamcef.It might be still relevant though Bamcef leadersip could not be convinced for trade union movement.I am shareing this document for fraiends still active in Bamcef Movement.)
Mulnivasi Trade Union is the URGENCY to Save Workers in Organised as well as Unorganised Sector Belonging to Excluded Communities ie Minorities, SC, ST and OBC!
(The Report is prepared in accordance with the Guidance of National President Mulnivasi Bamcef, Mr Waman Meshram!It is circulated for further Interactions.)
The first thing to do is to discard the mere establishment of trade unions as the final aim and object of 'Labour' in India.Babasaheb DR BR Ambedkar said!One of the most significant bills that Ambedkar managed to have passed was the Indian Trade Unions (Amendment) Bill, making compulsory the recognition of atrade union in every enterprise provided it fulfilled certain conditions!
The Indian Trade Unions Act, 1946 provides for obligatory recognition of a representative trade union.
Thus, Trade Union in itself is not the Objective, it must be the Tool to mobilise Greater Working Class for the Liberation of the Mulnivasi Bahujan!
Mulnivasi Trade Union is the URGENCY to Save Workers in Organised as well as Unorganised Sector Belonging to Excluded Communities ie Minorities, SC, ST and OBC! Since all Existing Tarde Unions are part and parcels of Brahaminical Political parties and guided with Brahaminical Political Leadership,Intersts and Ideologies, they do NOT represent the Bahujan Mulnivasi workers at any level! More over, this Trade Union Movement led by Brahamins did deviate from its general agenda that is to defend the Constitutional Rights of the Working class and its Welfare! The Trade Union Movement has Betrayed the Working Class as it is led by the Ruling Class and all set to defend the Class Interest of Market Dominating Brahaminical class in an EXCLUSIVE Economy based on EXCLUSION of the 95 percent NON Brahamin Non Aryan Majority Masses and Ethnic Cleansing of Eighty Five Percent Population consisting of Mulnivasi Bahujan. That is why, the Trade Unions led by Mostly Marxist Barahmins NEVER did Oppose Capitalism, Imperialism, Corporate Imperialism, Neo Libaral Policies, Economic Reforms, Disnvestment and Divestment, Privatisation and Free Market Economy!
The Token Opposition lodged by the Trade Unions NEVER did mean any Resistance whatsoever but it Helped the LPG Mafia to Implement Manusmriti Rule Postmodern as Trade Union Movement devoid of IDEOLOGY and focused on Financial Benefit which proved to be rather Complete Mind Control! The Rights of the Working Class and Labour Laws ensured by DR BR Ambedkar who NOT only Framed these laws but also Ensured TRADE Union Rights!Since Post Ambedkarite Movement did NEGLECT AMBEDKARITE Economics and his Legacy of Trade Union Movement, the Brahamins did SUCCEED to Hijack the Trade Union Movement to mislead it!They used it as CORPORATE LOBBYING and RESOURCE Generating Machine to Monopolise Power Politics!Hence, the Production system is Devastated and It is FDI Raj all over! Hence Job Security and Working Conditions have become Shattered Dreams for us. Privatisation has made Reservation and quota IRRELEVANT! The Tarde Unions, in fact, worked as STIMULUS for Lock OUTS and Privatisation! As it happened in Bengal. Fifty six thousand Production Units have been LOCKED Out despite so called Super ACTIVE Trade Union Activities!
Here, we do face a TREMENDOUS Challenge to address the Basic Problem what kind of Trade Union Movement would Save the Working Class consisting of MULNIVASI BAHUJAN, Excluded Communities and NON Brahamins deprived of previlege as per as the Ruling Brahamins! Dr BR AMBEDKAR said the Main Agenda of Trade Union is the Resistance against the Brahaminical System as well as Capitalism! Indian Capitalism is Represented by the Brahamin Bania Class only! How can you Oppose Capitalism led by Brahamins and defending the Brahaminical System! Waman Meshram ji also concluded that all problems are ROOTED in the Brahaminical System! It means the Prime Task for Mulnivasi Trade Union must be to Finish the Rotten Brahaminical System!
We have to create an ECONOMIC Cadre Network as we have the Cadres busy in Social and Geographical Networking as We need to look into the History of Indian Trade Union Movement, the Production system and Economy, AMBEDKARITE Legacy, AMBEDKARITE ECONOMICS!Case Studies Sectorwise and Statewise! We have to analyse why Trade Unions Faliled, Deviated! Even in some cases UNDERMINED the Mother Organisation as in the Case of Marxist and Communist parties.
Without ensuring safeguards against such DIVERSION and Suicidal Trends, constitution of Trade Union Movement afresh would rather strengthen the Ruling Hegemony!
I have been studying the topic since Seventies and have some ideas. But it should NOT be an Individual Subjective exercise. We have to be Precise and Objective at both Organisatinal and Ideological level! We have to interact a lot to finalise something to begin AFRESH to defend our people in the survival struggle! We have to think a lot about UNORGANISED labour forces scattered all over REALTY, CONSTRUCTION, Retail, Infrastructure and Service including IT sector living on Cotacts and daily Wage! We should also include AGRARIAN sector where the Peasants have been converted in a Class of Unorganised workers in the Free Market Economy!
We need some contribution from every thinking person specificaly who face the Challenges to Protect our People!
We must not forget that whatever facility we Bahujans have got it is not due to the begging and crying before the exploiters. It is due to the bitter struggle that our liberation warriors such as Fule, Shahu, Ambedkar, Periyar etc. launched to capture state power in the hands of masses. The frightened Arya-Brahmin exploiters had no alternative but to make "temporary agreement" to calm-down the struggle. Brahmins at the time of Fule, Shahu, Ambedkar though enjoyed high positions, did not have absolute power in their hands. Brahmins either were under the rule of Muslim, or British, Dutch imperialists. World imperialists also fought among themselves for snatching colonies from each other. These foreign imperialists were compelled to help Bahujans fearing they may support the opponent imperialists, the Muslim rulers or the communism. Imperialists were phobic of communism. Therefore, Dr. Ambedkar and other Bahujan warriors could receive safeguards for the Bahujan masses oppressed socially and culturally. Today the situation is hundred times difficult because inhuman Manucracy is part of world imperialism. Manucratics of India have become a strong ally of Israel and America and act as their lackeys. There is no communism to frighten them. Hence, the shameless unconstitutional Manucracy in Gujarat could arrange state sponsored massacre of Muslims with hidden support of Israel and America.
Dr Ambedkar descended the Indian skies like a meteor, lighting up the freedom movement with a viable economic vision and road map, charted a constitutional democracy which, as he often said, could take us to the revolutionary goal of equality , liberty and fraternity. This assessment is accepted by a large number of people. However, his economic ideology and mission have been buried in the sands of globalisation , privatization and 'reforms' by the ruling elite and even his self-proclaimed followers , who have joined hands in erecting stone and granite statues of the 'Revolutionary' whose thoughts not only sprang from the soil of the country but also its political ,economic and social realities ( It was buried even earlier by those who presented a confused and diffused ideology from various political platforms, and who buried his rational and scientific thinking ) . Admiral Vishnu Bhagwat rightly commented!
An associate of Mahtma Jyotiba Phule Narayan Meghaji Lokhande led the First ever Trade Union Movement even before the Famous Chikago Strike for Eight Hours Working Hour ! First Ever Peasant Strike was led by Ayyankali in Kerala! Mind you, these two incidents were closely related with the Basic struggle of Liberation of Untouchables in India! Babasaheb Dr BR Ambedkar has earmarked the First Ideological Principle for Mulnivasi Bahujan Trade Union as he said that the Trade Union had to Fight against the Brahaminical Hegemony First and then against Capitalism! Ironically, Trade Union Movement as well as Anti Capitalism Anti Imperialism Resistance were Hijacked by the Brahamins and the Fight against both Capitalism and Brahaminical Hegemony DIVERTED in single Motto of Benefit. Even Stalin used to say that the demand of bonus is a bourgeogie demand! The Working Class must fight to caprture the State Power! We must keep in mind this Ideological Destination in every condition!
While we see tha history of Trade Union Movement it would be clear how the Brahamins wiped out the Legacy of Lokhande and Ayyankali and Dr BR Ambedkar himself. Trade Unions organised the first Major STRIKE All India level against the Arrest of Bal Gangadhar Tilak who was the Greatest Defender of Manusmriti Rule and worked to Revive Brahaminical Rule SWARAJ!In 1905 , the Brahamins led Tared Unions were on Strike against the Partition of Bengal to defend the interest of Brahamin ZAMINDAR and Landlords while the Majority Mulnivasi BAHUJAN, Minorities, SC and OBC Communities were supporting the Partition. Then, as Tilak handed over the Baton to the Bania Manipulator, MK Gandhi who ENSLAVED the Munivasi Bahujan Afresh with POONA Pact, Trade Unions as well as Socialist and Communist Movement became the Part of Congress RAM RAJYA Campaign known as National Freedom Movement thanks to Brahamin Manipulated History!
To Ensure the Ideological Commitment to Liberation, it is then MOST Urgent that the Leadership of the Trade Union should Not be Handed over to the Foreign Origin Micro Minority Ruling Class what exactly happened after we deviated from the legacy of Dr Ambedkar, Ayyankali and Lokhande!
Hence, we have to be most careful finalising the Organisational network which should Resist any attempt by the Tresspassers at every level!
Then, the leadership, specifically, the President, General Secretary and Cashier must be ideologically sound.
Since we have a mother organisation, Mulnivasi Bamcef which is leading the Liberation Struggle with Geographical and Social networking, we must keep in mind that the Organisational or Agitational set up of the Mulnivasi Trade Union should not Disturb the Mother Organisation as it happened to Communist Movement in India. The decline of Communist Movement in India is due to several factors. But the Ideological and Organisational Failure as well as deliberate Diversion Killed Communist Movement in India. Bengal is the Real case where the Marxist Rule Ended just because of continuous impending disaster against the Peasantry as well as Working class! The Trade Unions in Marxist ruled States, Bengal, Kerala and Tripura, were used as Gestapo Force of Voting Machinery and the Working Class was made a naked tool for Resource Genration by the Marxist Brahaminical Hegemony.The Marxist Cadres, even belonging to the Excluded communities, were Not Aware that the Trade Unions became the part of strategical Survival to sustain Manusmriti Rule and to BOOST Free Market Economy. Since the Trade Union was made MONEY Spinning Tool by the Brahaminical Parties, their sole strategy was limited withinn the basic Urgency to Enhance the Paying Capacity of the Workers. Hence, contradictory to the legacy of Ambedkar, Ayyankali and Lokhande, the Anti Capitalism Mode and Anti Brahaminical Class Struggle mode of Indian Peasantry as well as Working Class was DEACTIVATED. And Financial Benefit Bargaining became the epicenter of Trade Union Activities in India. It boosted the Market as the flow of CASH amidst Workers boosted their purchasing capacity, as Budget Allocation to Social Sector and Government Expenditure do achiev this, and it strengthened and Expanded the Market. Neo Liberal Policies and Economic reforms, Ethnic Cleansing and LPG Mafia Rule , thus have been JUSTIFIED despite severe Job Insecurity, worsening of Working Condition, Privatisation and Retrenchment! Mind you, under the Post Modern Manusmriti Apartheid Zionist Brahaminical Global Order, the Micro Minority Market Monopoly Class Brahamin Bania Raj is strategically aligned with Corporate Imperialism which is Controlled by Illuminati which run the Global Economy! Unknowingly, the members of Excluded communities SC, ST, OBC and Minorities and even other Non Brahamin Non Bania Non Aryan Communities, were entrapped to work for the New Global Order and Illuminati which jointly DESTROYED Economy, Production System and Natural Resources which used to generate Local and Natural Employment for UNSKILLED and Uneducated workers!
We have to train our Cadres and workers in general while adopting agitational Progrramme against these Ideological as well as Organisational Diversion and Disadventure! Without the much needed Ideological network, any Trade Union Activity on our part may be suicidal as it would divert the basic agenda of Bamcef!
At the Same Time we have to note the changing and Expanding character of the Working Class which is Merging Small Business as well as Peasantry. To address these Challenges we have to go back to our roots, the legacy of Ambedkar, Ayyankali and Lokhande as their Concept of Working Class was rooted in the Contradiction of Social Infrastructure and its basic Unit Caste! Their Trade Union activities did INCLUDE the Peasantry as well! They succeeded INDEED!
Hence we have to constitute some Directive Principles before we launch a Trade Union Afresh which would be Binding Ideologically as well as Organisationally!
We have to go beyond the Legal Obligations to achieve this! Continuous PRABODHAN, Cadre Camps, Study Circles and Work Shop should be adjusted with Trade Union activities simaltaneously!
Manmad 1938, the GIP Railway Dalit Mazdoor Conference, ( caste discrimination was practiced in the railways and the textile mills , with the lower and lesser paid jobs going to the Dalits ; while clean and weaving jobs went to the 'other' workers ) , was a defining moment in Dalit struggle , an inflexion point, a turning point, that focuses both on the contemporary reality and a guiding star for the times ahead. Dr Ambedkar places before all, this foundation of his beliefs , convictions and the path that leads to the future , that the Dalits in a common united front to be forged with all the exploited classes , to achieve the goal of social and economic justice in an egalitarian society and real democracy thus :
1. The economic emancipation of the Dalits is as vital as the struggle for social justice ( To make the Dalits aware of the definition of the Subjugated class'; so that Dalit awareness is raised to a level whereby we join hands and march shoulder to shoulder with all other subjugated classes , to wage the struggle against the Ruling Class )
2. Brahmanism ( or the forces that negate and deny equality , liberty and the feelings of brotherhood, 'bhai-chara') and Capitalism are the two biggest enemies of the workers or toiling classes.
3. Karl Marx did not as a principle, say that there were only two classes, the owner and the worker, and that in India these two classes had evolved in their final form.
4. The spread of poisonous and vicious religious hatred in a casteist order in Indian society has resulted in workers and employees sometimes turning against each other , as opponents and enemies.
5. Trade Union Leaders while exhorting and giving spirited speeches against the Capitalists adopt double standards and remain silent on the issue of Brahmanism.
6. The Dalit wokers and labourers movement is not against the common workers movement . It also does not support the Capitalists . Their only request is that their independent identity be protected.
7. The movement of the Working class has deviated, from its main goal , and is solely concerned with trade unionism per se.
8. The General Strike is the weapon of last resort , it is not an end in itself to be used for attaining the end of competitive trade unionism – leadership.
9. In the struggle against capitalist owners the working class cannot be successful by resorting only to trade unionism. The workers have to seize and take the reins of political power in their hands.
10. Mazdoor Sanghatans which are politically directionless become tools in the hands of political parties that support the capitalist class.
11. Equality, liberty and fraternity must be the ideals of the working class.
12. Even after the end of British Rule , it would be wholly legitimate for the workers to struggle against the spider's web of the Landlords, Capitalists and the Baniya –Sahukar combine who will very much survive even after British Rule.
13. To wage a struggle to oppose the Imperialists does not mean that the class struggle against the internal structure of society has to be kept away on the shelf.
14. The Dalit class conflict in the interest of the Dalits must conjoin with the mainstream Mazdoor Andolan.
15. In normal situations Mazdoors will take the Constitutional path. However they should prepare and ready themselves to use other means , should the situation and circumstances so demand.
16. Dalit Mazdoor Sanghatan is in full co-operation and support of the All India Mazdoor Andolan; and it sees 'resevation' as complimenting and supplementing the Andolan.
Dr Ambedkar formed the Independent Labour Party on three fundamental / basic principles and these principles were:-
I. First : All the wealth , property and assets which are in this world are the result of / and have been created by the undying ,hard labour of the workers and the kisans. . Despite this , the worker and the kisans who toils with desperation in the field is naked and hungry. All these riches, property and the means of production have been arrogated by private property rights arbitrarily imposed by the profiteers, landlord class, capitalists and the rich class who have expropriated all this wealth by illegal / unjust loot, robbery and theft. This ( parasitical ) class has done nothing to earn this.
II. Second: Indian society is divided into the class ruled over and the 'Ruling' class', whose interests mutually clash as a class conflict between the 'Ruler-Exploiter' and the 'Ruled –Exploted', is fundamental, and this fact remains all encompassing.
III. The rights of workers and the toilers can be defended , ( and will be secured ) only when the reins of 'Political power' will be in their own hands.
The Manucracy, is so shameless and unconstitutional that you can not expect justice but only persecution and torture from them, because Arya-Brahmins have proved themselves worst enemies of Mulniwasi Bahujans. All commissions (human rights, SC/ ST, Women's etc.) which lack any power to do justice are constituted to 1) appoint Arya-Brahmins on higher posts. 2) to deceive people in the hope of justice and 3) to act as an agent of exploiters in weakening Bahujan struggle. To deceive people, these commissions must create illusion of justice by false propaganda with rare incidences of insufficient justice. People countable on fingers get lottery still the millions go after it. The same principle is applied by these commissions to deceive the Mulniwasi victims. The higher authorities of the concerned department will not respond whenever it goes against Arya-Brahmin interest. It does not matter which authority you plea. You will not receive any reply from them. In writing letters and reminders to president of India, governors, all the commissions, ministers and chief minister you will only spend your money, time and will get only frustration. We ourselves are sufferer. We have no genuine Bahujanwadi media or it is very weak. No matter how just and right we are ! No matter how genuine is our side, the Manu-media will declare that we are totally wrong. In the big loud noise of Manumedia our voice have always been remained unheard.
No hope from judiciary. Judiciary is anti-Bahujan and act on the behest of Manu-Smriti to protect Arya-Brahmin interests. Have you forgotten the big Statue of Manu raised in the foreyard of Rajastan high court in Jaipur? In giving anti-Bahujan judgements it does not hesitate to go beyond its powers, and make contempt of constitution says Waman Meshram.
Therefore, our main objective must be to destroy the exploitation system completely and establish firmly the Bahujanwadi Samajik Ganatantra (Bahujanist Social Democracy). Our every action must lead us ahead in that direction. Any action which does not accomplish this function is a misleading activity. When the exploiters are afraid of loosing their state power they beg Bahujans to accept concession such as reservation and other facilities. Those who hold the reins of state-power has the ability to give concession to others. Therefore, when the Irish nationalist Redmund asked Karson the leader of Alster to agree for united Irish state and get whatever facilities and concessions he needs. On this Karson replied, "Down with your concessions, we do not want to be ruled by you at any cost."
"Manusmriti" deprived OBC, Dalit, Adiwasis from education and respectable jobs. The same is being achieved by speedy implementation of Liberalization, Privatization & Globalization" (LPG). The LPG and SEZ are modern Manusmriti. We must realize that the liberalization, privatization and globalization (LPG) and SEZ which is "modern Manusmruti" is being implemented to exploit and enslave laboring masses of the world by imperialist countries. Arya-Brahmins are part of world Tri-Iblisi imperialist alliance. Therefore, fighting against Brahminism & LPG and SEZ involves struggle against world imperialism. Considering oppressive capacity of world imperialists and their ally Arya-Brahmins, think and visualize the nature of struggle would require and prepare ourselves for it.
When Arya-Brahmins shall find themselves incapable of retaining power through the elections, they will abolish parliamentary system and impose dictatorship over the toiling masses. Then struggle will be the only alternative left with the toiling masses to free themselves from exploitation and to establish Bahujanwadi Samajik Ganatantra.Therefore, genuine struggle is a fundamental need while the electioneering shall be always secondary and complementary to the basic struggle.
The Only Alternative for the indigenous Masses !
1) All parties of Brahmin leadership are enemies of Bahujan interest. Enemies are fought tooth and nail. Solidarity is developed between the friends. Hence it is our sacred duty to destroy these organizations. We must never trust our enemiesand analyze their every sugar coated poison proposals with extreme caution.
2) Dr. Ambedkar has clearly instructed us not to depend on any leader for our emancipation of any kind. Our emancipation lies in our own hands, and in our own efforts. The basic need is to aware masses for decisive struggle against every facet of Arya-Brahmin exploitation and oppression system. Dr. Ambedkar wanted exploited Bahujan masses to become politically aware, launch missionary activities themselves and develop organizational skills and control mission and its leadership. Therefore, every exploited Bahujan considering his own efficiencies, weakness, resources and responsibilities has to dedicate himself for the missionary activity of his choice and priority. "A missionary activity is that activity which unites Bahujan Samaj, strengthen its struggle and weakens Brahmanism". Unless missionary activities are started by exploited aware Bahujans themselves, we can not destroy exploitation system, free ourselves from oppression and establish exploitation free social system.
a) Never worry of difficulties no matter how great they are ! Instead, welcome them for the cadres are tempered and steeled by surmounting difficulties. Only by surmounting difficulties our struggle can grow. Therefore, whosoever does not welcome difficulties to conquer them but lament an shed tears can not be regarded as an aware Bahujan. Such a person is only a lazy, devoid of intellect, coward, selfish or slave in mentality. We the children of "Fule, Stalin, Ambedkar" are born to win !
b) Think not in terms of individual organizations but in terms of "whole process of struggle" between us and our exploiters. In this "process" many Bahujan organizations would be friends some with their limited capacity, some will remain in mission only to a point only. Therefore, do not expect anything beyond the capacity of friends & the friendly organizations and strive to fulfill by your own efforts whatever is lacks in the Bahujan mission. The enemy and their lackeys would strive to deceive and destroy our struggle. Therefore, identify our friends and the enemies, assess their strength and weaknesses, identify "cracks" in enemy fort, use them to demolish the enemy fort.
c) "Followers" of Fule, Shahu, Ambedkar, are reviving Fule, Shahu, Ambedkarism buried under ritualism and devoteesm. They don't carry Bahujan idols on their heads but understood life mission of Fule, Shahu, Ambedkar to implement their teachings in their struggle against the exploitation and oppression. They spend their every penny on creating awareness among Bahujans, punishing the oppressors and on missionary activities leading to destruction of the Arya-Brahmin exploitation system.
Delusions of Working masses
1) Toilers believe that they are to be ruled by a powerful ruling class as the ruling class only have the ability and skills to rule. This delusion is maintained because of their deep-rooted mental slavery. Mental slaves can never think of becoming masters. Mental slavery creates apathy to develop necessary skills to control the rulers or uproot their exploitation system. If someone's brother cheat him he will not talk to him whole life; someone rape his women he may retaliate in extreme vigor and continue enmity for generations. But because of mental slavery Bahujans tolerate and ignore every cheating, betrayal and oppression of Arya-Brahmins and bring them to power by voting in their favour. You must uproot your mental slavery to make struggle against exploitation and oppression possible.
2) Poor masses have developed delusion that highly educated intellectuals or the high profile people can only become leaders and rulers. Being uneducated and having low profile they (masses) should never become politically aware as this is the task of intellectuals only. Because of above delusion even the communist parties who talk of working class leadership, in practice, exclusively have nonworking class Arya-Brahmin leadership. No communist party member protest against this ideological betrayal because all are deluded with this delusion.
This delusion results from sense of inferiority and fear of taking wrong decisions. They are unable to recognize that almost all of the decisions taken by intellectual class, from the point of view of ending exploitation and oppression, turned to be completely wrong because of timid and opportunistic class characteristics of intellectual class. Masses even fail to relate the fact that everybody learns through committing and improving from mistakes. Everybody fell while learning to walk and so on.
3) Toiling masses have developed a delusion that their duty is simply to choose among the rulers. They should not even think of controlling government, their leaders or their struggle.
4) Masses have developed a delusion that they must depend upon good leaders against exploitation and oppression therefore they simply wait for saviours to appear. They have never thought of controlling leadership an idea which is considered most important and essential for democracy by Dr. B.R. Ambedkar.
5) Masses have developed delusion that struggle against exploitation and oppression simply means giving monetary contribution to their party leaders, attending their meetings and processions, and voting in favour of candidate decided by their leaders. This delusion compel them to ignore that nun of these routine activities accomplish task of Bahujan Mission i.e. activities that successively weaken Brahmanism and strengthens Bahujan unity and their struggle.
6) They have delusion that if they choose their own role in struggle considering their own strengths, weaknesses and family and professional responsibilities and liabilities and carry the chosen missionary activities continuously means breach of party discipline. Therefore, they remain idle. This delusion is biggest setback for Bahujan struggle.
If we really, deeply study his core ideas , ideology if you like , his central mission is spelt out in his drafts to the Constitution Drafting Committee of which he was the Chairman ,1947-49 . Dr Ambedkar finally emerged as the main 'Architect' of this most vital document that lays down the framework of the Republic and its social , political and economic objectives , which is a manifesto of those who struggled for India's freedom against foreign capital , foreign rule and local dominant , economic and caste interests . The Constitution is above the Supreme Court , the Lok Sabha , the Prime Minister and the Executive and was intended to be its guiding star , its Dhruva tara. How much we have deviated from the Constitution's Directive , its soul the Directive Principles which are mandatory for any Government in office is an issue which is for all of us to assess. . If this is tested by the ground reality of the condition of the exploited classes , the denial of equality of opportunity , of education, of the very right to life , to work, and economic policies which have made the preamble of the Constitution a paper promise in the hands of the exploiting class who have arrogated to themselves a near total monopoly of resources , unprecedented and growing concentration of wealth that make a mockery of the direction 'for the common good'.
First of all let us try to forge a common understanding of how 'Ambedkar thought' evolved ? Is it possible to flag mark Dr Ambedkar's tortuous yet blazing journey . Dr Ambedkar chose his own methodology to educate and inform himself . It is true that cataclysmic events took place in the journey of his life…the 1917 October Proletarian Revolution in Russia, which to begin with placed power in the hands of the workers and peasants , the toiling and hitherto exploited class . In my understanding , though he may not have explicitly stated so in his revolutionary call in Manmad in 1938 , that was the central idea of his declaration of the three principles at the workers conference to which we will come as we discuss further . Then came the 'Great Economic Depression' of 1929 , with its devastation , hunger and unemployment , which not only burnt and singed the people in the United States but also in Europe . The Capitalist classes across the industrialized countries speedily funded Fascist groups , to further disposses and divert the working class . This was spread through fear and propaganda , promising them the mirage of nationalism , discipline, conquests and full employment , at the same time breaking their organizations , enslaving them in factories , mines and plants jointly owned by global 'finance capital' , including by American corporations and British capitalists , through the 1930s , as now brought to light , through the period of the Second World War ,via a commonly owned and set up Banking system, while the soldiers were killed and maimed as cannon fodder on military fronts all over the world in Europe , the Soviet Union , North Africa and Asia . Dr Ambedkar by now a champion of Dalit rights also clearly saw that Dalit emancipation could only be achieved through a broad united front of all the exploited classes . Dr Ambedkar had already defined a Dalit as 'one who struggles' ( for democratic rights ). His definition was, therefore, categorically inclusive of all individuals and groups who were naturally bonded , engaged in the common struggle, of the exploited classes.
Dr Ambedkar had through his definitive works , beginning in 1917 with his outstanding doctoral dissertation at the Colombia University, the "National Dividend of India" , essentially on the transfer of wealth and surpluses from India to Imperial Britain , laid bare the huge colonial (looting ) enterprise on which Britain's industrialization was founded . There is another work , that of RC Dutt , covering this path breaking subject ; which dared to expose to bare bones , through facts , figures , official documents how Britain , later called 'Great Britain', established and executed the great parasitical enterprise , called British India . Dadabhai Naoroji whom Dr Ambedkar greatly respected also spoke and wrote on the rapacious transfer of surpluses from India to England .This thought process , bold and courageous in the extreme, shook those little social clubs who were petitioning the Sarkar for some concessions in entrance to the British Indian Army through the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst and the ICS quota for Indians . Historically , it was quite a coincidence that Gandhi's own experiences in South Africa of racial discrimination and apartheid , brought him to India and start transforming the Congress into a mass organization of peasants , workers and all the toiling masses within the limitations of the social setup in the country. Not content with his monumental work Dr Ambedkar finished writing his " Small Holdings in India and their Remedies in 1917." We cannot but infer that Mahatma Jyotiba Phule's "Kisan Che Kode" inspired him and stoked his passion to try and expose, and later struggle , by throwing in his lot with those classes subjected to extreme social , political and economic exploitation .
Academically and to further consolidate his grasp of Public Finance was published in 1921, he worked on and published "Provincial Decentralisation of Imperial Finance in British India , the Problem of the Rupee ( the issues of Silver and Gold Standards ) in 1923 , the Evolution of Provincial Finance in British India 1925. Let us pause for a moment and reflect on the boundless energy , the diligence and perseverance , the prodigious output of the Man. No economist in India has produced such monumental , vital and relevant works as Bhimrao Ambedkar did in those nine years 1916-25. Undoubtedly these studies gave him an incomparable advantage over his contemporaries . He may have surpassed his contribution as a Law Minister after 1950 in the field of public finance if he had been Finance Minister ; but Finance Ministers in the existing system have to be conservatives not revolutionaries , who may upset the 'apple cart' !
Dr Ambedkar had emerged as ,by far the most erudite and scholarly economist on the sub-continent. His alert , incisive and sensitive mind was now setting up his own compass for the struggles ahead as he walked tall in the thirties. The Great Depression of 1929 –33 shook the whole world and its epicenter was in the United States and Europe , the foremost capitalist systems, where he had spent his period of study and observation . Capitalism's exploitative chain had broken down and was engulfed by a serious crisis ; it was replaced by Fascism , i.e the rule by private Corporations in partnership with the ruling elite controlling the State apparatus. Dr Ambedkar was perceptive enough to grasp the significance of slave labour being used by the Corporations . While he had pre-occupations with the Round Table Conference, the Poona Pact , the Government of India Act 1935 , the provincial elections and Separate electorates ; he was deeply distressed by the exploitation , impoverishment, daily humiliation and denial of human rights to the exploited classes and the Dalits in the social mileu of the backward , feudal , arch conservative society that had evolved in the country of his birth . This evolution was not an accident . Michiavellian state craft in combination with parasitical economic production relations and a cruel , ritual order was used as a means to enslave the people who built India . Another economist in Ancient India had seen through it all – Chanakya who led a revolt of the slaves and helped install a Shudra dynasty , the Mauryas , which held sway over most of India until it was done out by a regrouping of the wealthy and the propertied , expropriating classes . The people who toiled in the fields to produce food, the bundkars who wove clothes and fabrics , the artisans who made tools with their hands , household items and the most exquisite articles with precious stones and alloy metals , the people who built homes , palaces and monuments, the leather workers who made shoes , saddles for the army cavalry and without whose services society would not exist and flourish , were all continuously being cheated , looted through expropriation of the surpluses that they created by their sweat, blood and sacrifices. The Manu Smriti , a fraudulent , adharmic manufacture of diseased minds of some elements of the priestly class who had prostituted themselves to the exploiting , ruling class to lay a spider's web of fear , intimidation and an unimaginably, cruel and despotic social order based on all that is ignoble , unjust and unequal , in direct opposition to the Dharma that many great minds, specially Gautam Buddha , and those who guided Indian society had laid down. The nectar of Dr Ambedkar's perceptions can be gauged by a better effort at understanding the essence of his writings and speeches , through his life and the stands he took, some necessarily with compromises, underpinned by his deep understanding of how the exploitative chain and the process of accumulation of surplus works and creates an overwhelming majority of serfs and slaves as an economic underclass leading a dehumanizing animal like existence , outside the boundaries of the proper village or bustee and in slums and ghettoes in the cities and towns as outcastes , untouchables and sub humans or'unter-menschens'. Others , so called born into higher castes have also been forced into this large mass of labor, of unceasing toil , of carrying the load on their backs and pulling the 'thela', since then with the rise of modern capitalism.
Dr Ambedkar had decided to carry out the struggle on two tracks ; to destroy the oppressive social order and to bring about an equitable , non –capitalist economic restructuring through mass awakening , reform and democratic movements , as he believed that real economic democracy was a means to transform a nation to a just order . He said 'the struggle for economic justice was as important as the struggle for social justice' . Why has this central idea and central mission of Dr Ambedkar's life been forgotten and his core ideas and philosophy on the struggle for economic justice , suppressed by various big leaders and movements in all corners of the country is a question of fundamental importance ? This needs to be urgently corrected if we have to move forward.
The Expansion of Working Class
We have a wider organisational Set Up with Bharat Mukti Morcha besides different organs like Rashtriya Mulnivasi Sangha, Mulnivasi Mahila sangh and Mulnivasi students Organisation and other Units of social networking! Coincidentally, the Cadre Base of these organisations would rather help us to Unite and Mobilise the Expanding Working Class!As these organs have broken the Middle class set up of SC ST Employees Associations, this would Further Break the Upper Middle Class Middle Calss limitation of Self Centred Working Class PROMOTED by Brahaminical Leadership which turned Selfish, Benefit Seeking,Alienated from the Roots and Identity, Idle and Disinterested in Ideological Struggle which made them Professionally Incompetent and Inefficienst and Organisationall worthless! The Brahamin leadership BLINDED them so much so that they are not aware of the Impending Disaster and never did realises the Break down of economy or Production system! Finally, they are NOT Prepared to Pay Back the Society in any condition! The First Task should be to break the Middle class selfish blind suicidal barriers!
The New Global Order has Not only Destroyed the National Production System demoting Production as well as Manufacturing and Promoting Service, Import, Export,Private Investment, Public Private Mode of Development and Omnipower Omnipresent Foreign Capital, it also DESTROYED Business small and medium as well as the Agrarian Rural world and strategically Free Marketed the Culture of Consumerist Ethnic Cleansing!
Emergence of NON ORGANISED working Class is the most principal Development! Permanent job is replaced by CONTRACT Job even in Govt. departments! Infratstructure and Development became Top Most priority to launch Monopolistic Aggression to exploit Natural Resources. Citizenship Amendment Act, Land Acquisition Amendment Act, Retail FDI, Mining Amendment Act, other Financial and economic Reforms, SEZ, NIMZ, Industrial Areas, Industrial Corridors, Nuclear Plants, Big Dams, High Ways and Indiscriminate Industrialisation and Urbanisation led to AGRARIAN crisis converting the Society in itself a FREE MARKET which has to be DOMINATED by the Ruling Caste and Class which is Identical in India! Because Private Investment and Foreign capital are the two most Decisive elements in the Baseless SENSEX Economy, Traditional Business set up is also Broken as the Agrarian Rural Indigenous Aborigine World has BEEN Devastated!
Now the People engaged in Small and Medium Business, small scale industries and Manufacturing and Peasantry do CONSTITUTE the Majority of the Working Class and most of them are NON ORGANISED as in Agrarian sector, Realty and Infrastructure, Construction, IT, SEZ and services!
The Chief Task of the Mulnivasi Trade Union MUST be to Organise these people who coincidentally belong to the EXCLUDED Communities and have been dislodged from Home, Land and Livelihood! The have NO SURVIVAL KIT and predestined to be KILLED in Ethnic ECONOMIC Cleansing! We must MOBILISE them for Liberation, NOT for Financial benefit!
Can the proletariat, Majority MULNIVASI BAHUJAN assume the leadership of the revolution? Is it sufficiently strong and politically mature?
The power of the proletariat is sufficient to enable it to lead the Indian revolution.In India, the proletariat means the Majority MULNIVASI Bahujan! Dr BR Ambedkar has clarified it long before! What it lacks in numbers it can more than make up for by the great masses of the peasantry, whom only the proletariat can offer a program of expropriating the landlords and usurers. At present, the Peasantry and the whole Indigenous Aborigine Landscpae as well as Humanscape are SUBJECTED to MONOPOLISTIC Corporate Aggression by the LPG Mafia !
Provided, we develop an Ideological Organisational Network to MOBILISE the workers from Non Organised Sector specifically from Buisness and Agrarian Sector, it would be the Best opportunity for REVOLUTION which means Ultimate Liberation from the Age Old SLAVERY of the Brahaminical system and Hegemony and also from the Global New Order!
The decisive question, however, in India today as throughout the world since the degeneration of the Communist International, is that of the leadership of the working class itself. Will it push forward a firm revolutionary leadership, impervious to bourgeois influences, understanding the full implications of a struggle to the end against imperialism?In fact, this question was IMPENDING since the Trade Union Movement was DIVERTED by the Brahamins like TILAK, Gandhi and Nehru to ensure BRAHAMIN Bania Raj long before 1947 and the Socialists, Communists and Marxists were SUB Ordinate to them. After 1947, the Brahaminical Parties used Trade Unions to hold on Political as well as State Power! India Incs and MNCs added another Dangerous Dimension of NAXALITE and Maoist ideology and Movement to EJECT out the Mulnivasi Bahujan Demography out of NATURALLY Resourcefull Geography as in CENTRAL India!
Here you are!The Decisive answer is the Leadership of the New Working Class must Emrge representing the Majority Mulnivasi BAHUJAN Excluding the Brahaminical Aryan Class which DIVERTED the Trade Union Movement hitherto!
We have to keep in mind the Communist Betrayal from the Beginning! As the Communist Party and the Democratic Party of the renegade M.N. Roy were vainly exhorting the workers to refrain from strikes, repudiate the civil disobedience campaign and cooperate with the British for the sake of the "war for democracy." Even befor 1990 as well as after 1990, the Marxist and Communist Trade Union Leaders REFRAINED from RESISTANCE and focused on BENEFIT Bargaining to divert the Working Class from its main task to Overthrow the Brahamin Bania LPG Mafia Rule!
The Subordination of the Trade Union Movement to the Manusmriti Hegemony is the Greatest Problem since then!
Trade Unions did support Congress,Tilak, Gandhi and Nehru and the Brahamin Bania Swaraj!
Brahamins succeeded to alienate the Workers as well as Trade Union Movement from Dr. BR Ambedkar who first did launch the Labour Party!However, Stalinists had done otherwise under ultra-radical formulas during the civil disobedience campaign of 1930-31 – and disgrace the unions in the eyes of the Brahami nationalist movement. Unfortunately, the Stalinists have been swept aside.
Those Brahamin leaders of the Congress like Nehru who called themselves socialists. Brahamin leaders were urging the workers on to struggle. But at every critical point in the past they have capitulated to the Congress bourgeoisie.Later, Mrs Indira Gandhi also adopted the Socialist Mode, aligned with Communist USSR and introduced Nationalisation policy! CPI aligned with Indira Gandhi and the supported EMERGENCY Promulgated by her! Meanwhile, Pro US Democratic movement led by Socialist Jai Prakash Narayan introduced First Indian Spring and it also INVOKED the Revival of HINDU Nation and RSS family. After the Demise of USSR, Unipolar Global Power Equation led by Zionist Corporate Imperialism emerged with New Global Order and the Brahamins led by CONGRESS and RSS aligned with it. INDO US Nuclear Agreement established FDI Raj and Foreign capital Inflow captured the COMMUNIST MARXIST MAOIST movement Combined which further Handicapped the Trade Union Movment which failed to mobilise whatsoever Resistance and betrayed the Working Class in its fight for Survival and sustenance!
The Excluded Communities lost the leadership as Dr Ambedkar had to meet an untimely demise under Conspiracy as our friend BILAS Kharat has Exposed in his research work.
Since Ambedkarites had NO Leader like AMBEDKAR, the Dual Betrayal by the CONGRESS and COMMUNISTS supported by Brahaminical Parties,including the Communists, created the ground for Neo Liberal Policy!
Narasimha Rao and Manmohan are credited for which.
But GREEN Revolution, Defence Alignment and deals, Mass scale Militarisation, Big Dams did open the Floodgates of foreign Capital as the EXCLUSIVE Economy had no Fiscal policy from the Beginning and Taxation had always been over loaded against the Ninety Five Percent of the Population, the Excluded Communities, Minorities and Non Brahamin Non Aryan Masses!
Five Years Plans and yearly Budgetary allocations, Monetary Policies always boosted the Market which was MONOPOLISED by the Brahamin Bania Raj and the status quo sustained!
Mind you, like India, Russia too was a predominantly agricultural country and yet the industrial proletariat led the October Revolution. Trotsky tells us that the Russian industrial working class, exclusive of railwaymen and miners, amounted to 1½ millions in 1905 and two millions in 1917. The comparable figures for British India were (roughly) as of 1935: two millions in power-driven factories, one million plantation workers (European-owned factory farms), 400,000 transport workers apart from railwaymen. With the undoubtedly considerable increase since 1935, one can say that the Indian proletariat compared in specific weight to the Russian proletariat of 1917. It is bigger and stronger than the Chinese proletariat of three millions which was prevented from assuming the leadership of the Chinese revolution in 1927 only by the false policy of the Communist Party.But the RESULT was NIL! What Ambedkar, Ayyankali and Lokhande did, was UNDONE and the TRADE Union Movement was INVESTED to ensure Brahamin Bania raj and Manusmriti Rule! The Ramrajya!
In fact, as should be obvious, the working class movement in India at present faces immense challenges. Because the Brahaminical Hegemony is NO MORE a local Phenomenon! DNA report proved the FOREIGN URASIAN Origin of the Ruling Class and Caste, the BRAHAMIN which aligned with the New ZIONIST Global Order of Corporate Imperialism controlled by ILLUMINATI! Now, the Brahaminical Hegemony is GLOBAL and Brahaminical System in India is replaced by the Global HINDUTVA! The Task of Sustenance of the Working Class and Peasantry has been made IMPOSSIBLE and the destination to LIBERATION becomes very Tough despite the GLOBAL Movement like OCCUPY the Wall Street! Till this date, Indian Trade Union Movment has not RESPONDED as yet!
First of all, the very structure of India's workforce highlights the complexity that the movement has to confront. As of 2004-05, India's workforce was estimated at nearly 460 million. Of these, only 70 million were in any kind of regular employment. Another 130 million were casual or contract wage workers. But the majority of India's working people-the remaining 260 million-were in fact 'self-employed', being for the most part tiny producers or persons forced to engage in some income earning activity on their own for a pittance, given the absence of any kind of social security for the poor in our country. Such increase in employment as has taken place since the late 1990s has been either in the informal sector or in informal employment in the formal sector.
Indian working class is facing an unprecedented assault in the wake of policies of privatization, downsizing, increased workload, contractualization-casualization-informalisation and so on. Hard-won trade union rights are under constant attack not only from the central and state governments, but also from the judiciary. And to be sure, it is valiantly responding to the challenges. Even a cursory glance at some of the struggles that rocked India in recent years, reveal an extremely broad sweep: the struggles waged by government employees in Tamil Nadu and Bihar, the weeklong strike of SBI employees, struggles of NALCO and Neyveli workers, the nationwide protests by central trade unions against blatantly pro-imperialist measures like the hike in FDI cap in Telecom industry (February 7, 2005), the Parliament March of February 26, 2005 against the passing of the Third Patents (Amendment) Bill, the trend-setting action in aviation sector by the airport authority employees and so on.
Absolute levels of formal employment in the organized manufacturing sector have shown no rise for over a decade, despite high rates of growth of manufacturing output. The share of wages in gross value added in manufacturing has been declining steadily since the early 1980s. A significant part of the country's workforce-including the wage employed- is at very low levels of education. A substantial part of the working population is linked to land and to pre-capitalist relations.
Ideologically, the forces of obscurantism and of identity politics continue to exercise a strong influence even on the segments of the working population including industrial workers that are part of the technologically advanced sectors of the economy. Divisions of caste, religion, language and ethnicity have not disappeared, and continue to influence the consciousness of workers, thus making the task of developing the class and political consciousness of the working class a major challenge. But the CASTEOLOGY overwhelming is not to do anything with MULNIVASI Bahujan Identity. It is jaust in line with the traditional Caste System which establishes the Micro MINORITY Brahamins DOMINATING and Detremining!
Where the democratic movement has advanced through decades of struggle, there is emerging an all-in unity of the most reactionary forces against it. In defence of the Age Old hegemony and System which are further Strengthened by LPG Mafia Rule!
Neoliberal policies, while deepening the crisis of working people's lives, also provide a fertile soil for growth of divisive forces within the MULNIVASI Bahujan Demography that make it even more difficult to build the unity of the working class and of the broader sections of working people.The criminal Hijacker are still the Organisational and Ideological leaders!
Narayan Meghaji Lokhande, OBC leader from Mumbai Maharashtra who is well known as the Father of Indian Trade Union Movement, Anykali the Dalit SC Leader who led the First Strike in British India and Dr. BR Ambedkar who ensured the Trade Union Rights and Labour rights in India- have been outfocused to marginalise Indian working Class movement by the Marxist Leaders of Trade Union Movement Post Independence!Post Ambedkarites also did deviate from Ambedkarite Ideology which recognises the Excluded Communities SC, ST, OBC and Minorities as Producers and workers! Annihilition of Caste was immersed in Casteology and Greater Disaster for the Excluded Communities as Powerful Castes were co opted into the Hegemony to ensure POWER POLITICS Win and Share in Power with the Vote Bank equation of Castes most powerful across Caste and class line! More over, lack of Internal Democracy and Empowerment within the Ambedkarite movement has been HIJACKED by the Most Absolute and Opportunist caste leaders including those from Caste Hindus and the AMBEDKARITES making alliances with the Ruling Hegemony in the Centre and States contributed most to sustain ECONOMIC ETHNIC Cleansing! In parliamentary Majoritarian system, co opted Representation of EXCLUDED Communities departed from Trade Union Activities as well as Ambedkarite ECONOMICS of Inclusive Mass Mobilisation to Liberate the Eighty Five percent Enslaved Bonded Indian Masses. Deviation from Ideology have created number of FACTIONS and Personal Cult in the Ambedkarite movement and it led to the situation where the Aboriginal Indigenous Excluded landscape and humanscape are SEIZED WITHIN and all political parties and trade Unions push for Further Capital Inflow and Economic Reforms not to mention any resistance whatsoever.
BHARAT MUKTI MORCHA has launched Hundered Days` Budget Burn Campaign which is virtually a great Resurgence of AMBEDKARITE Economics! I have been talking and writing on the Global Phenomenon in which Caste Identity would be Never enough for SURVIVAL in War and Civil war like conditions and Unprecedented Violence Flare Up in ANRCHY sponsered by the Mind Control game 3 G Spectrum and Toilet media. The STATE power is in fact MILITARY NUCLEAR BIO Chemical Power and we have no space for Mass Movement and even EXPRESSION, Civil and Human Rights.
Now, I do understand that Gandhian NON Violence was NEVER anything like Hindutva or Buddhism or Spritual Philosophy, but it was an EXCELLENT STRATEGY to resist the BRUTE Imperilaism which ended the SCOPE of All Out Aggression. Maoist Menace is the Part of Global Phenomenon to kill the Democratic Civil and Human Right movement in Violence so that Ruling Manusmriti Zionist Corpoaret Hegemony may have the LICENSE to Kill the Aboriginal and Indigenous , Working and Producing Communities! It is happening all over the Globe!
Thus, an ORGANISED Non Violent Trade Union Movement in the Organised SEctor is the DEMAND of the TIME and we may not dare to BETRAY the Challenge provided we have Hearts and Minds intact with Human Sensitivity and Commitment to the Toiling masses in HOLOCAUST Environment!
It is only through a relentless struggle against both neoliberal policies and obscurantist forces of all hues that the working class movement will be able to go forward. For this, the Fundamental task as DR Ambedkar earmarked and Ayyankali and Lokhande showcased with their historical achievemnt should be Pursued rigidly! Without launching Final ASSAULT against the Brahaminical hegemony, Mobilisation of Working Class as MULNIVASI BAHUJAN Entity is impossible. Recent Bharat Mukti Morcha Mass Mobilisation demanding OBC headcount may be a brighter Development but we have no support from the Trade Union front! To make effective the Mass Movement, we have to have the control over Economy and Production system and it is IMPOSSIBLE without the mobilisation of the Working Class. Hence,the Role of the Mulnivasi Trade Union is going to be very instrumental!
The current global economic crisis and the bankruptcy of neoliberalism that it has exposed as well as the present disarray in the camp of obscurantism may well be an opportunity that the working class movement can seize to go forward. However, this demands also that the working class movement must carry with it the overwhelming mass of petty producers including the peasantry but without succumbing to the political illusions of petty commodity production or romantic conceptions concerning the dynamics of social change that tend to underplay the role of science and productive forces.
It is rather a positive development that BHARAT Mukti Morcha with Village to Village level Networking is already doing the Ground work to Mobilise the Working Class as Mulnivasi Bhujan entity!
N. M. Lokhande, a disciple of the great social reformer Jyotiba Phule. Long before trade unions of a modern type came into being in India, Lokhande espoused the cause of workers and was a pioneer in attempts to impart literacy and rudimentary education to the workers of factories in the late 19th century.Narayan Meghaji Lokhande who pioneered the labour movement in India will be remembered not only for ameliorating the working conditions of textile mill-hands in the 19th century but also for his courageous initiatives on caste and communal issues.
Narayan Meghaji Lokhande fought for providing numerous facilities which are enjoyed by workers today.
His tireless efforts led to the establishment of the first Indian labour union, the 'Mill Hands Association' in 1884.For the first time in India the Bombay Mill Hands Association was formed on 24 April 1890. This gave impetus to the trade union movement in British India. The establishment of ILO in 1919 provided a source of inspiration for the workers to organise themselves and shape their destiny. India's membership of the same exerted great influence in the formation of a central organisation of workers called 'All India Trade Union Congress' (AITUC) in 1920 for the purpose of conducting and co-ordinating the activities of the labour organisations.
A member of the Factory Labour Commission established in 1890, Lokhande's efforts contributed to the enactment of the Factory Act (1891).
Every year, the first day of the month of May is being celebrated as the May Day. Since the beginning of the last decade of the nineteenth century this day came to be observed as the Labour Day or International Workers' Day to highlight the struggle of the workers and manifest their solidarity throughout the world.
The emergence of the urban working class can be traced to the Industrial Revolution in Europe since the mid-eighteenth century. The workers were exploited with lengthy hours of work, poor wages and unhealthy living conditions. Even women and children were forced to work for 12 to 15 hours a day. There was neither government legislation nor popular movement to improve the condition of the working class.
The first attempt to ameliorate the miserable condition of the working class was made by the so called 'Utopian Socialists'. A British socialist, Robert Owen created a model community of workers by improving their working and housing conditions and providing schools for their children. His ideas stimulated the cooperative movement in England. In France too, a number of socialists such as Saint Simon, Charles Fourier, Proudhon and Louis Blanc tried to implement socialist ideas to improve the condition of the workers. However, their efforts did not succeed in improving the lot of the working class.
Born in 1848 in Thane, he began his career in the Railways and Postal Department before joining the Mandavi Textile Mill as a storekeeper.
A follower of social reformer Jyotirao Phule, the Maratha Hospital at Mumbai was started by Lokhande to provide medical aid to the poor during the plague epidemic in 1896.
He died on February 9, 1897, while serving people affected by the plague.
Mind you,The Indian Working Class is very young just because of Late Industrialisation. Only in the last two decades has it emerged permanently from the peasantry, and many proletarians still have direct ties with the villages.
The first real impetus for modern industry in India came in 1914-18, when wartime necessities relaxed the British policy of preventing the growth of factories in India; manufacturing for Britain's armies, and for the home market hitherto flooded with English-produced goods brought forth the Indian proletariat. Despite Britain's renewed discouragement of Indian industry after the war, and the narrow domestic market due to the impoverishment of the peasantry, a poverty which fell to starvation levels after 1929, industry (including mining and transportation) developed so that by 1935 there were five million Indian workers in modern plants. Since then war preparations have brought expansion – the extent is concealed by Britain as a military secret – which has undoubtedly added several millions to the industrial proletariat. The specific weight of this class is enormously increased by the fact that the industrial plants, established so late in the development of capitalism, are generally large-scale enterprises, so that the workers are concentrated into relatively few production units.But ironically, after Lokhande we the Excluded Communities lost the Intitiative and handed over the dvantage to Brahamins only.
If the latter half of the 19th century was marked by the emergence of industrial workers and their spontaneous resistance, the first two decades of the 20th century witnessed a massive expansion of working class struggle in our country, preparation of organised trade union movement and the assertion of the role of the working class on key political questions.But it contributed to Nothing as Communists led by MN Roy had already Hijacked the Trade Union Movement.
Indian Congress was born with the Demand of HOME Rule in 1885 and it demanded INDEPENDENCE as late as in 1927. Meanwhile, it was lobbying for better Placement of those in the Brahaminical ruling Class fold. CONGRESS also supported the British Colonial rulers to defend the interest of Capitalism. Since the Socialists and Communists were aligned to Congress and Brahaminical System, the Trade UNION Movement was DIVERTED therefrom despite brillient examples of Trade Union Activities as the Working Class in general was UNAWARE of the Political Equation and Economics. It remains the fact even today!
A major section of the Anushilan movement was attracted to marxism in the 30s.
Reason for Civil Disobedient Movement led by Congress an Gandhi was to contain the RESISTANCE of Indian People and the emerging Working Class!
Imput from BANGLAPEDIA
Trade Union Movement organised activities of workers to improve their working conditions. In the early stage of industrial development when there were personal contacts between employers (master) and workers (employee), there was no need of any organisation to determine relations between the two. But under the modern factory system the personal touch is absent and the relations between the employer and the worker have come under strain. The conflict of interests between buyer and seller of labour power has become conspicuous and this has led to the rise of trade union movement throughout the world. The tradition of the parallel development of the nationalist and the trade union movement, which had originated in British India continued through the Pakistan period down to the birth of Bangladesh.
For the first time in India the Bombay Mill Hands Association was formed on 24 April 1890. This gave impetus to the trade union movement in British India. The establishment of ILO in 1919 provided a source of inspiration for the workers to organise themselves and shape their destiny. India's membership of the same exerted great influence in the formation of a central organisation of workers called 'All India Trade Union Congress' (AITUC) in 1920 for the purpose of conducting and co-ordinating the activities of the labour organisations.
The period from 1924 to 1935 may be considered as the era of revolutionary trade union movement. MN Roy, Muzaffer Ahmed, SA Dange and Shawkat Osmani led the trade union movements and as a result the political consciousness among industrial workers increased. To control the movement, the British government adopted ruthless measures (eg, Kanpore Conspiracy Case and Meerat Conspiracy Case) against the militant workers and trade union leaders, but no strategy could suppress the trade union movement; rather the colonial resistance invigorated the movement against the colonial power. Later, the trade union movement was closely linked with nationalist movements and the working class started vigorous struggle for emancipation from extreme repression and economic exploitation by the colonial regime.
At the time of Partition of Bengal (1947), most trade union leaders were Hindus and when they migrated to India, a void was created in leadership in the trade union movement of Pakistan, especially in its eastern wing. Moreover, the institutions to advance workers' interest were mostly situated in areas outside Pakistan. There were barely 75 registered trade unions in the whole of Pakistan, compared to 1987 in undivided India in 1946. Of this small number of trade unions, the larger share fell to West Pakistan, leaving only a very few for the eastern wing, where there were only 141 factories with 28,000 workers and 30 unions in all with a total of 20,000 members.
During Pakistan period most trade union leaders held conflicting views and the trade unions were fragmented and weakened. As a result, the trade union movement met a setback and the trade union activities passed into the hands of petty bourgeoisie leadership. Moreover, the trade union movement in Pakistan was characterised by fragmentation of unions, prolonged strikes, retaliatory lockouts and picketing which sometimes led to violence.
As the trade union movement in Bangladesh originated in British India and Pakistan, it naturally retained its old character of working more as a nationalist force against colonial domination than as a class force vis-a-vis capitalist exploitation. As a result, the trade union movement of the region that had gained momentum in the hands of political leaders stood divided along the political and/or ideological lines in independent Bangladesh.
During this period, the trade union movement was marked by direct interference by the government and the ruling party in its internal affairs. In many industrial belts terrorism was let loose by the men of the labour front of the then ruling party and tried to drive out the honest trade unionists from the leadership of the unions. Moreover, the barring of outsiders from trade union leadership at the basic union level made the process of union hijacking very easy and turned the workers into a very weak and defenseless community.
In the early 1980s, the military government of Bangladesh banned all trade union activities in the country. Then an alliance of the National Federation of Trade Unions (NFTUs) emerged in the name of Sramik Karmachari Oikka Parishad (SKOP) to establish the democratic rights of workers as well as to fulfil their economic demands. Most NFTUs were in SKOP and since 1983, most trade union movements in Bangladesh have been organised under the leadership of SKOP.
The opportunism and lenient attitude of the trade union leaders including SKOP gave the ruling regimes a chance to disregard the agreements signed between the government and the trade union leaders. At present, the leaders of nineteen of the twenty three NFTUs are included in the SKOP. After its formation, SKOP submitted a 5-point charter of demands for establishing their democratic rights and higher wages through rallies, torch processions, demonstrations, strikes, hartals, blockades etc.
Ironically, SKOP failed to yield any tangible results for the working class people of the country. The effectiveness of the trade union movement under the leadership of SKOP gradually weakened because most SKOP leaders have political affiliations and therefore, cannot escape the influence of their respective political parties. Moreover, lack of active support by the major political parties to SKOP's programmes, excessive pressures on government by the private employers and donor agencies to disregard SKOP's demands using repressive measures to disrupt the trade union movement, forcible occupation of unions, bribing of trade union leaders, opportunistic and compromising attitude of the union leadership rendered the SKOP demands ineffective. In fact, SKOP has become a moribund forum of the working class with little to offer to the country's future trade union movements.
[Abdul Awal Khan]
Emergence Of The Indian Working Class
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The term labour movement or labor movement is a broad term for the development of a collective organization ofworking people, to campaign in their own interest for better treatment from their employers and governments, in particular through the implementation of specific laws governing labour relations. Trade unions are collective organizations within societies, organized for the purpose of representing the interests of workers and the working class. Many ruling class individuals and political groups may also be active in and part of the labour movement.
In some countries, especially the United Kingdom andAustralia the labour movement is understood to encompass a formal "political wing", frequently known by the namelabour party, which complements the aforementioned "industrial wing".
In Europe, the labour movement began during the industrial revolution, when agricultural jobs declined and employment moved to more industrial areas. The idea met with great resistance. In the 18th century and early 19th century, groups such as theTolpuddle Martyrs of Tolpuddle, Dorset were punished andtransported for forming unions, which was against the laws of the time.
The movement gained major impetus in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries from the Catholic Social Teaching tradition which began in 1891 with the publication of Pope Leo XIII's foundational document,Rerum Novarum, also known as "On the Condition of the Working Classes," in which he advocated a series of reforms including limits on the length of the work day, a living wage, the elimination of child labour, the rights of labour to organize, and the duty of the state to regulate labour conditions. Following the release of the document, the labour movement which had previously floundered began to flourish in Europe and later in North America.
Throughout the world, action by the labour movement has led to reforms and workers' rights, such as the two-dayweekend, minimum wage, paid holidays, and the achievement of the eight-hour day for many workers. There have been many important labour activists in modern history who have caused changes that were revolutionary at the time and are now regarded as basic. For example,Mary Harris Jones, better known as "Mother Jones", and theNational Catholic Welfare Council were central in the campaign to end child labour in the United States during the early 20th century. An active and free labour movement is considered by many to be an important element in maintaining democracy and for economic development.
"Negroes in the United States read the history of labor and find it mirrors their own experience. We are confronted by powerful forces telling us to rely on the good will and understanding of those who profit by exploiting us [...] They are shocked that action organizations, sit-ins, civil disobedience and protests are becoming our everyday tools, just as strikes, demonstrations and union organization became yours to insure that bargaining power genuinely existed on both sides of the table [...] Our needs are identical to labor's needs: decent wages, fair working conditions, livable housing, old age security, health and welfare measures [...] That is why the labor-hater and labor-baiter is virtually always a twin-headed creature spewing anti-Negro epithets from one mouth and anti-labor propaganda from the other mouth."
The outburst also had a distinct working class dimension in addition to intensification of the Swadeshi campaign and beginning of revolutionary terrorism.The first attempt to ameliorate the miserable condition of the working class was made by the so called 'Utopian Socialists'. A British socialist, Robert Owen created a model community of workers by improving their working and housing conditions and providing schools for their children. His ideas stimulated the cooperative movement in England. In France too, a number of socialists such as Saint Simon, Charles Fourier, Proudhon and Louis Blanc tried to implement socialist ideas to improve the condition of the workers. However, their efforts did not succeed in improving the lot of the working class.
The first trade union in the true sense of the term was formed on 21 October 1905 amidst intensive strike struggle in printing presses of the government. In 1905 itself workers of Burn Company (Howrah) and Kolkata Tram Company and 2000 coolies and sweepers of Kolkata Corporation went on strike. In October 1905, 950 railway guards of the East India Railway, Bengal sector, participated in a strike struggle for wage revision (against racist discrimination in wages). In 1906, about 1000 jute workers went on strike against inhuman behaviour of British officers and for improvement of their working conditions.
Similarly in 1905 several strike struggles were organised by textile workers of Mumbai against increased workload. In 1907, textile workers also participated in a strike for wage hike. Some of these strikes continued for full one week. In 1906, 500 Post and Telegraph employees participated in a week-long strike for their wage hike, bringing the entire work of the P&T department to a halt.
1907 witnessed a wave of militant struggles of railway workers on various economic demands and in protest against too much workload, successfully bringing different zones of the railways to a halt. The struggles of railway workers assumed a very crucial role in anti-imperialist mass awakening.
Meanwhile in 1907, the Indian National Congress got split into two fractions, viz. the moderates and extremists. The moderate leadership withdrew the campaign of boycotting foreign goods, called for co-operation with the government and advised rejection of militant struggles. The so-called 'extremists' led by Balgangadhar Tilak, Lala Lajpat Rai and Bipin Chandra Pal called for intensifying the mass campaign against the British. Tilak and his followers started a campaign among workers in Mumbai and appealed to them for joining the anti-British movement. The Russian revolution of 1905, though not successful in the immediate sense, also had an inspiring impact on the Indian proletariat. In 1908, textile workers of a foreign-owned cotton mill at Tuticorin went on strike and attempts to suppress them were met by militant protests of municipal workers and common people.
In this backdrop, when Tilak was arrested on 24 June 1908 by the colonial police and booked on the charge of "sedition", Mumbai workers swung into action. On 29 June thousands of people including workers clashed with the police in front of the court. When the trial began on 13 July the clashes were further intensified. Armed military forces cordoned off the roads so that workers could not reach the court. In a few cotton mills workers went on strike and marched towards the court. The army tried to disperse them, but a wide cross-section of people joined the march. The struggles continued through 14-16 July 1908. Workers of British and 'native' mills went on strike. 20,000 workers marched across the entire mill area calling upon other workers to join the strike.
On 18 July, police opened fire on workers. On 19 July in Mahim and Panch area of Mumbai 65,000 workers joined the strike. On the next day, police again fired on workers. Dock workers and petty traders along with common people joined the struggle. On 21 July, strike struggles spread further . On 22 July, 5 striking workers booked in criminal cases were sentenced. This was also the final day of Tilak's trial and he was sentenced to 6 years imprisonment. On that day, defying storms and heavy rains, thousands of workers gathered in front of the court, forcing the authorities to remove Tilak from the court through back doors after the sentence was pronounced.
What follows is an account of 6 days of workers' political action against the 6 years' sentence for Tilak: a struggle in which 200 workers and common people lost their lives.
• 23 July: workers of Mumbai went for an all-out political strike against the atrocious sentence. 1 lakh workers went on strike and a broad cross section of people came out in support of the strike, turning it into a general strike.
• 24 July: confrontation between striking workers and their supporters and the police got intensified. Street-fights started in different part of Mumbai. People formed small groups and threw brickbats to counter the police firing. Many workers were killed and injured.
• 25-26 July: The struggle continued and 'native' mill owners started their campaign to break the strike.
• 27 July: The urban middle class and other unorganized labouring people also joined the struggle.
• 28 July: Urban servants from a rural background joined the struggle and took an active part in the street fights.
In terms of intense hatred against the colonial authorities, mass militancy, sustenance, and linkage with other sections of society, it was really a grand beginning of the political awakening of the Indian working class.
Lenin hailed this heroic action of Bombay workers in the following words: "The infamous sentence pronounced by the British jackals on the Indian democrat Tilak … evoked street demonstrations and strike in Mumbai. In India, too, the proletariat has already developed to conscious political mass struggle — and, that being the case, the Russian style British regime in India is doomed."
Lenin's words proved prophetic. Workers confronted both the British regime and 'native' capitalists in militant struggles, often finding themselves at odds with the official Congress leadership. In the process, the working class gradually established itself both as a front -ranking detachment of the freedom movement and as a formidable fighter against the exploitation and injustice meted out to it as a class. The next couple of decades saw a rapid proliferation of trade unions culminating in the formation of the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) in 1920 as the first central trade union; and also the foundation of the political party of the working class, the CPI, in 1925. In course of an eventful journey through 1947 and beyond, the Indian proletariat launched innumerable struggles not only to defend its interests and expand its rights, but also to address the burning issues facing the nation. Many of these movements -- such as the "Sholapur Commune" (May 1930), the numerous strike struggles during the Quit India Movement, street fights in Kolkata and Mumbai respectively against the trial of INA soldiers and the Naval Mutiny (1945 and 1946), the historic political action of Durgapur Steel workers in solidarity with the prolonged food movement combined with burning issues of workers (August 1966), the all-India strike by 25 lakh central government employees and workers demanding "need-based minimum wage" (19 September 1968), the historic railway strike by 20 lakh workers (May 1974), the great textile strike in Mumbai led by Dutta Samant in 1980s and so on -- carried forward the glorious tradition of the first political strike of 1908 and will always inspire us to forge ahead.
British colonial rule had a twofold impact on societal development in India: (a) destroying the elements of capitalism that were naturally emerging from within the Indian variety of feudalism and (b) on the ruins of these indigenous capitalist elements, developing a distorted capitalism characterised by absolute domination of colonial capital and a new comprador class. The journey of industrial capitalism charted by the British began with the introduction of railways in 1853 (laying 20 miles of railroad from Mumbai). This was followed by the development of coal industry in the Asansol- Jharia belt of Bengal and Bihar which was essential for raw materials to run the railway engines. Around the same time tea plantation was introduced in Assam. Jute, textiles and spinning industries also began to take shape, giving rise to commercialisation of agriculture for the purpose of industrial use of agricultural raw materials.
1853 thus marked the emergence of modern industrial workers in our country. At that time the main component of the working class was landless poor peasants and bonded agricultural labourers -- mostly from socially backward and oppressed backgrounds such as dalits and tribals. Moreover, there was a strong presence of labouring women and child labourers. Marginalization and destruction of skilled artisans acted as a stumbling block in the process of natural transformation of artisans into modern industrial workers.
Spontaneous Protest And Struggle Of Working Class At The Initial Stage (1850-1900)
The first-ever strike struggle of Indian industrial workers took place in March 1862, i.e., within nine years of its emergence. 1200 Railway Workers of Howrah Station went on strike demanding an eight hour work day. In 1877 workers launched a strike demanding a wage hike in Nagpur Empress Mill. Between 1882 and 1890, 25 important strike struggles took place in Mumbai and Madras Presidencies. In 1881, jute workers at Ghusuri (Bengal) went on strike on two occasions against wage erosion. In 1885, jute workers of Budge Budge (near Kolkata) went on strike for 6 days and in 1889 the same jute workers went on strike for 8 days. The police opened fire on the agitating workers.
As colonial industrialization advanced, the newly emergent class of industrial workers reacted spontaneously to extreme exploitation with a good many struggles. Such outbursts, mainly directed against excessive workload, low wage and absence of minimum security, began to attract the attention of humanist intellectuals. In other words, the nascent working class movement carved out a niche for itself within the reformist domain. While workers were yet to be organised in trade unions proper, enlightened intellectuals like Sashipada Banerjee of Bengal and N M Lekhande of Mumbai started some reform work among industrial workers from a humanist and philanthropic perspective. In 1874 Sashipada Banerjee published a news magazine for workers called 'Indian Workers' and in 1898 Lekhande published a magazine in Mumbai called 'Dinabandhu'. Mr. Banerjee also set up the Baranagar Institute on the outskirts of Kolkata to impart primary education to workers. On the initiative of the Brahmo Samaj and under the direction of Sashipada Banerjee, night schools and a Savings Bank for jute workers were set up in Baranagar in 1884. Another propagandist of the Brahmo Samaj, P C Majumder established 8 night schools in Mumbai to spread primary education among workers. In Mumbai Lekhande prepared a 5-point charter of demands (related to working conditions like Sunday holiday, half- an -hour rest in noon, payment of wage within 15th of every month etc.) of workers and collected signatures of 5,500 workers in 1884; later it was submitted before a commission appointed by the Government.
Formed in 1885, the Indian National Congress was dominated by the "enlightened" upper strata and the leadership was controlled by big zamindars and the emerging capitalist class. Its class character did not permit it to address issues like exploitation and suppression of poor peasants and workers.
The first Factory Act in colonial India was enacted in 1881; it banned the appointment of child labour below 7 years and children between 7 and 12 years were awarded 4 holidays. The Factory Act of 1891 further expanded the rights of workers; the age limit for child labour was raised to 9 years. It also provided for 7 hour working day for child workers up to 14 yrs, 1½ hour rest for women workers and half- an -hour rest for male workers; Sundays were declared holidays.
However, neither British nor Indian capitalist ever cared to implement the minimum rights of workers as per Factory Acts. In fact workers could hardly make any demarcation between British colonial rulers and Indian capitalists. Their class consciousness developed through organically linked dual conflicts with both British colonial rule and Indian capitalists.
One of the key impacts of colonial rule in India was the process of decimation, through most of the nineteenth century and especially its first half, of artisanal industry and massive deindustrialization which led to the shift of population on a large scale from urban areas to rural India. This was of immense political and economic significance. It meant that the emergence of a modern working class would be an enormously complex and protracted process under especially unfavourable circumstances characterized by the threefold exploitation of labour: pre-capitalist, colonial and capitalist. Although the railways and associated engineering industries beginning in the 1850s, soon followed by the development of the cotton textile industry, and later, jute, sugar and cement, did see a rapid increase in the numbers of the industrial workforce, it was a workforce drawn from a distressed rural population rendered greatly vulnerable by British colonial policy in relation to land tenure, land revenue and agriculture. This not only meant extremely low wages determined by the prevailing miserable living standards of the rural poor and highly exploitative conditions of work, but also that the emerging working class would be steeped in pre-capitalist relations, both in terms of economic ties to land and agriculture and in terms of caste and other obscurantist structures and values. Even the very process of recruitment of workers to industrial jobs through labour contractors would often imply that workers in any factory would already be compartmentalized in terms of religion, caste and location of origin. This would of course pose huge challenges to the working class movement in its efforts to organize workers into unions and to develop their political and class consciousness.
Under these circumstances, it was no surprise that while the political organization of the Indian bourgeoisie had already taken concrete shape in the formation of the Indian National Congress by the mid 1880s, the first modern trade union emerged only in the second decade of the twentieth century in the shape of the Madras Labour Union of the workers of Buckingham and Carnatic Mills in the then Madras Presidency. The first national conference of the All India Trade Union Congress took place only in 1920. However, as is well known, the trade union movement made rapid strides in the 1920s, inspired both by the Russian Revolution of October 1917 and the mass national movement against colonial rule. Plagued by internal divisions and facing the systematic repression of trade unions by the colonial rulers who foisted conspiracy cases against prominent trade union and working class militants, the movement of the working class suffered several setbacks in the 1930s, but managed to survive and then gradually strengthen itself under the leadership of the political Left, with intermittent but inconsistent support from a section of the leaders of the Indian National Congress. The working class played an important role in the transition to freedom from colonial rule, a wave of industrial action being a prominent feature of the two years on the eve of independence, 1945 and 1946.
Working Class Movement in Independent India prior to neoliberal economic reforms, 1950 to 1990
The national and international context at the time of India's independence was conducive to the relatively autonomous development of capitalism in India. For over three decades, the Indian ruling classes did attempt such a path of development. While this path, based in the first instance on stimulus to growth from public investment, import substitution and limited land reforms, did produce a rate of economic growth and diversification of industrial activities that was impressive in relation to the stagnation of the colonial period, it ran into a crisis by the mid 1960s, and the economy was characterized by relative stagnation from the mid 1960s to the end of the 1970s. The roots of the crisis lay in the fact that the Indian bourgeoisie compromised with landlordism and imperialism, with the result that neither the agrarian revolution could be completed nor the fight against imperialism carried forward consistently. However, during this phase of economic development from the early 1950s to the end of the 1970s, the working class expanded significantly and the working class movement made rapid strides as well.
The impressive achievements of the working class and trade union movement in this phase become evident when one recalls that during colonial rule, well into the twentieth century, fifteen hour working days were common in factories and the daily real wage was often poorer than the daily prison rations. Despite the systematic attempt by the Congress after independence to split every one of the mass organizations that had been under one banner during the freedom movement, and despite serious ideological differences within the Left movement itself, militant and united trade union struggles took place through the turbulent 1970s, thanks to the maturity of the leadership of the most militant segments of the trade union movement in that period, the high points of that decade being the formation of the United Council of Trade Unions (UCTU) and the historic strike of railway workers.
By the end of the 1970s, major changes occurred in the international economy. Massive building up of financial surpluses in the hands of the global transnational corporations following thirty years of uninterrupted growth at about 5 % per annum compound of the world from the end of the second world war, the petro-dollar accumulation in the metropolitan banking system following the massive increases in the price of crude oil in 1973 and 1978, and the vast expansion in the various funds emerging from the savings of workers and employees for the post retirement phase of their lives all led to the rise of finance capital on an unprecedented scale. The breakdown of the international monetary system evolved at the Bretton Woods conference of 1944 where the World Bank and the IMF were created, and the simultaneous revolution in information and communications technology led to the emergence of a world economy in which highly centralized, large finance capital acquired enormous power.
The 1980s saw both the rise of finance capital and the massive attack on trade unions and working class rights on both sides of the Atlantic-the USA and the UK. The new international conjuncture provided the Indian bourgeoisie the opportunity to borrow from international financial institutions, both official (World Bank, IMF etc.) and private (such as commercial banks), and embark upon a loan-financed expansion of government expenditure to stimulate economic growth. Acceptance of large scale international loans, beginning with the 5 billion SDR loan from the IMF in 1981, brought with them strong conditionalities requiring reining in of wages and rising administered prices. The early1980s saw a major attack on trade union rights in India, with the passing of the National Security Act (NSA) and the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA). Sustained and militant struggles of the working class sought to stem the rising tide of repression.
Working Class Movement and Neoliberal Reforms, 1991-2009
By the end of the 1980s, the global tide of reaction had been greatly strengthened by the smashing of militant trade unions in USA and UK and the weakening and ultimate collapse of the socialist economies of Eastern Europe, with imperialism playing a key role in these events. The restoration of capitalism in Russia and the break-up of the USSR by 1991 made the international situation dramatically different from what it had been between 1950 and 1980. Meanwhile, the policies of loan-financed government expenditure and import liberalization of the 1980s led India into a twin crisis- a fiscal crunch and collapse of the balance of payments-by 1991, brought forward by massive capital flight in early 1991. This provided the minority Congress government of Narasimha Rao the excuse to effect a major shift in economic policies in favour of foreign finance capital.
Popularly known as LPG –L for liberalization, P for privatization and G for globalization-policies, the economic reforms have entailed removal of most norms of accountability of private capital in the name of deregulation, opening up of vast new spaces for profit-centered operations in fields as diverse as education, health and infrastructure in the name of privatization, and the relatively unrestricted movement of goods, services and finance into and out of India. The period of neoliberal reforms has been by far the most challenging period for the Indian working class movement. With the State lining up strongly behind both international and domestic large capital, and ignoring the interests of working people, both rural and urban, altogether, the working class has had to fight a defensive battle, especially with the collapse of socialism in many countries and a strong ideological offensive mounted by a triumphant capitalist order.
In retrospect, and contrary to claims made sometimes that the neoliberal order has more or less eliminated resistance, with even such resistance as has been mounted by the political Left being largely 'tokenist', it is remarkable that the working class movement in India under Left leadership has managed to sustain its struggles and retain its base among working people, having successfully carried out major partial and general industrial strike actions over the last decade and a half. The electoral verdict of 2004 and the impact of the Left on government policies in the period 2004-2009 stand testimony to the resilience of the Indian working class movement under trying conditions. While the neoliberal policy framework remains in place, the ruling classes have also had to concede ground in a number of instances. Thus, the UPA 1 regime which began by notifying the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act three days before presenting its first budget in July 2004 ended its first term by passing two important Acts-the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act and the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act-in versions that had been improved substantially by the intervention of progressive forces both inside and outside the Parliament.
The UPA began its second term in office by admitting the role of such measures as the national rural employment guarantee scheme (NREGS) and the Farm Loan Waiver in its electoral victory, thus attributing the victory not to neoliberal policies but to potentially pro-people interventions. It would of course be completely wrong to suggest that the government has moved away from neoliberal policies. On the contrary, its panic stricken measures to further liberalise the financial sector and open it up to speculative forces of global finance indicate that even while advanced capitalist economies are seeking greater regulation of private players in the wake of the global economic crisis, our rulers remain firmly committed to disastrous neoliberal policies. The government has also repeatedly declared its commitment to privatization of even profit-making public sector enterprises. But it is important to understand that the slowing down of the reform juggernaut preceded the global economic crisis and is in substantial measure due to the active resistance put up against these policies by the working class movement led by the political Left in our country.
The Real Role of the General Strike
Since the Lahore Congress of 1929, where Nehru proposed it, the Congress has included in its program of struggle the General Strike. But, as the whole history of the labor movement has demonstrated, an effective General Strike can mean only: (1) a strike called for a specifically limited period of a few days, as a political protest for some limited demand or (2) a strike called without any time limit, with the perspective of paralyzing industry and transportation in order to follow it up with the conquest of state power. The first form of General Strike, appropriate for a limited demand, is obviously inappropriate for the achievement of independence. It has its place today – to demand the release of the imprisoned independence fighters – as a preliminary skirmish which mobilizes the masses. But to win independence, only the second form of General Strike can serve. The Congress leadership, however, has no plan or perspective for following up a General Strike with the seizure of power and establishment of a provisional government. Neither the pacifist wing of Gandhi nor the "left" Nehru wing thinks in such terms. Both are united in seeking what they call "a complete deadlock" – sufficient paralysis of governmental and economic activity to dictate to the British a resolution of the "deadlock" by reopening negotiations on the basis of the demand for independence. In the final analysis, they seek Britain's agreement to independence.
This Congress program, it is obvious, is altogether inappropriate for the industrial proletariat. Not only in the sense that revolutionary workers understand that such methods cannot overthrow the British. But also the indubitable fact that the workers cannot carry on strikes indefinitely. The peasant struggles – refusal to pay taxes and rents, etc. – still leave the peasant with the miserable living he wrests from his tiny plot of land. The hartals of the small shopkeepers can go on for a long time while the petty bourgeoisie manages to live off its tiny capital. But the industrial proletariat has neither land nor capital and starves in long strikes. It cannot strike for a year or two of civil disobedience. Moreover, the main weight of British repressions are undoubtedly directed against the workers, for the British can stand the peasant struggles and shopkeepers' hartals far longer than they can endure the shutdown of the war industries. Every factor, therefore, compels the proletariat to link its strikes with an immediate perspective of overthrowing the British. Life itself drives the working class, beyond the "deadlock" program of the Congress.
Role of Karl Marx
It was Karl Marx who gave a voice to the working class. His clarion call, "Workers of the world unite. You have nothing to lose but your chains", has been the guiding spirit of the worker's movements all over the world. Marx made a close study of the industrial society and formulated certain conclusions, which constitute the chief principles of Scientific Socialism also known as Marxism or Communism. The basic ideas of Karl Marx were first expressed in the 'Communist Manifesto' which he wrote along with Fredrich Engels in 1848. Marx believed that the only way to ensure a happy and harmonious society was to put the workers in control.
Marxism had great influence on the history of the world. It inspired the Communist Revolution in Russia (1917) and other countries like China, Cuba, Vietnam and other East European countries. Marxism and the Russian and Chinese Revolutions inspired and emboldened the working classes throughout the world to unionize and fight for their rights.
On May Day or International Workers' Day, labour unions affiliated to various communist, socialist of anarchist groups take out processions and hold demonstrations and street rallies to show their solidarity and power. May Day is an important official holiday in most of the countries of the world. In Communist countries such as China and former Soviet Union, May Day celebrations typically feature elaborates popular and military parades.
In India, the movement of the working class originated in industrialized centers such as Kolkata and Mumbai during the British period. Industrial working class emerged in India in the middle of nineteenth century when railways came to be introduced along with its ancillary industries. With the development of coal and iron mines, iron and steel industries, jute and cotton textile factories and tea-plantation industry, the number of wage earning people went on increasing.
During the British rule, the condition of the Indian workers was miserable. They were paid meagre salaries. The working hours in all the cotton mills and even other industries were 13 to 15 hours a day. The working conditions inside the factories were 'inhuman'. The workers had to put in hard labour and after the shift was over, they were so exhausted that a large number of them used to get fainted within the factory premises. The condition of the female workers was deplorable.
Employing of child labour was so common that children in the age group 5-7 constituted a major workforce in most of the factories.
Neither the British government nor the employers were sensitive to the miserable condition of the working class. Finally, after a lot of blood-bath on the part of the workers and pressure from the civil society, Indian Factory Act, 1881, was passed. This Act banned the employment of a child below 7 years of age in a factory and fixed the working hours for children in the age group 7-12 at 9 hours.
The labour movement in India had a humble beginning with Sashipada Banerjee publishing a journal titled 'Bharat Shramajivi' (Indian Labourers) in 1878 from Kolkata, exclusively devoted to the labourers.
This journal started expressing the labour problems for the first time. He also founded an institute in 1880 to spread primary and hygiene education among the workers. Another important contribution of Sashipada Banerjee was the establishment of a Savings Bank exclusively for the workers in Kolkata. A similar effort was initiated by Meghaji Narayan Lokhande in Bombay in 1898. He also started a journal, named 'Deenabandhu' (Friend of the Poor) in Marathi language.
In Kolkata and Mumbai as well as in other industrial centres, the labour movement was chiefly led by the Socialists and Communists. In post-independence era, with the proliferation of industries and factories, the working class began to make its presence felt. Realizing the potential of the workers as a political force, a number of labour unions came to be organized or supported by the political parties. Moreover, some of the labour union leaders developed political ambitions and contested elections either to the state assemblies or parliament.
Rising from humble beginning, George Fernandes became a firebrand trade union leader of Mumbai who initiated the 'bandh' culture in India. He contested the Lok Sabha elections in 1967 and defeated the Congress stalwart S.K. Patil.
The week-long all India railway strike organized by George Fernandes in 1974 did paralyze the entire nation.
Datta Samant began life as a doctor in suburban Mumbai. Moved by the plight of some patients who were stone quarry workers, he sought to fight for their rights. Soon, he evolved as a militant labour union leader who could get better wages for the workers. In 1982, Datta Samant led 2.5 lakh workers from Mumbai's textile mills on a record-breaking strike. The strike practically destroyed the textile industry and rendered thousands of workers jobless. This was the saddest episode in the history of the working class movement in India. Datta Samant even contested and won the Lok Sabha election in 1989. However, union rivalry or other unexplainable reasons led to the assassination of Datta Samant in May 1997.
With the collapse of Communism in the former Soviet Union and the East European countries during the 1980s and adoption of liberalization and globalization, the working class movement has received a serious set-back. By paying better salaries and providing good working environment, most of the multinational corporations and even Indian firms have made the labour unions redundant. Under these circumstances it seems that the International Workers' Day has lost its relevance in modern times.
With the global economic meltdown, a large number of workers have lost their jobs. Many employees are forced to work on reduced salaries. As the workers in multinational companies are not unionized they do not possess the collective bargaining power in favour of workers. Besides, the silent majority of the unorganized urban and rural workers who continue to be exploited by ruthless employers await a messiah who could lend them a voice and lead them to a better future. As long as the workers are exploited and denied their basic rights, the May Day or the International Workers' Day has relevance not only in modern times but also in future till the establishment of a classless society.
Shri Narayan Meghaji Lokhande was a follower of Jyotirao Phule, the founder of 'Satyashodhak Samaj' in 1873. The philosophy and teachings of Jyotirao Phule made a lasting impact on Shri Lokhande and he pledged to devote his life for fighting the social ills and to improve the status of women and downtrodden. It is also said that it was Shri Lokhande who, in a public function on 60th birth anniversary of Jyotirao Phule, conferred on him, the title of "Mahatma".
In fact, the ideals of social justice, equality of men and women and eradication of casteism always remained dear to him. He was also a supporter of cooperative education.
As a Chief Editor of 'Deenbandhu' he continued his campaign on the issues dear to him. During the communal riots in Bombay in 1893, he exhorted the people to restore communal harmony and peace. He worked to ensure an atmosphere of positive dialogue between Hindus and Muslims. He also urged through the newspaper to maintain peace and amity. The British Government honoured him by conferring the title of 'Rao Bahadur' for his outstanding efforts.
Lokhandeji may have well regarded it a happy coincidence that the year of his birth, 1848, was also the year in which Karl Marx and Frederich Engels published the Communist Manifesto. He would have been equally proud of the fact that in that same year Mahatma Jyotiba Phule had established in Pune the first ever school in India for the education of our women. These happy coincidences have more than a symbolic value because Lokhandeji combined in himself Marx's and Engels' concern for the working class and Mahatma Phule's commitment to the cause of women.
Lokhandeji was a product of the awakenings of that era of our history, which altered the destiny of our Nation. The establishment of the Mill Hand Association in 1884 by Lokhandeji marked the institutionalization of the labour movement in India. Deeply moved by the inhuman working conditions and ruthless exploitation of workers, Lokhandeji spearheaded an agitation against millowners and demanded fair wages, a healthy working environment and the protection of the rights and liberties of labour. His struggle resulted in the constitution of the Factory Labour Commission, of which he was made a Member. The work of this Commission led to the enactment of the Factory Act of 1891, which regulated working conditions and gave some special rights to child and female labour.
What set Lokhandeji apart from many of his peers was his equal commitment to the welfare of non-working people who were also victims of discrimination. He championed the cause of women, especially widows, dalits, minorities and other weaker sections of society. His trade unionism represented the best of the social democratic and liberal consciousness of his times.
Lokhandeji's wider social commitment was reflected in the passion with which he edited the newspaper, 'Deenbandhu'. He was also deeply committed to communal harmony, having played a role in forging unity between the Hindu and Muslim Communities during the communal riots of 1893. He was an active participant in the strove hard struggle for social reform including through his involvement with the Satyoshodhak Samaj established by Mahatma Jyotiba Phule. For these activities he was conferred the title of Rao Bahadur, a rare honour indeed for a labour leader!
Right from his early days, Ambedkar made a mark as a restless and courageous experimenter who, obviously, did not always get it right in the matter of trade-offs (and did not claim to). He fell in love with ideas as a socially oppressed and humiliated schoolboy who refused to be taken for a ride by anyone, including Baroda's royalty. Throughout his life (which ended on December 6, 1956, a couple of months after he publicly embraced Buddhism along with his followers), he was interested in the big picture. But the boy who was socially barred from playing cricket with his schoolmates in Satara (by the curse of untouchability) never took his eye off the ball. He concentrated in his public life on attainable, practical goals and never became too big to go into specifics, details, doubts, books, the problems of ordinary people, especially the lowliest of the low in Indian society.His lifelong concern with religion, morality and justice in the idealistic sense was marked by a restlessly serious attempt to get the intellectual, social and political measure of these things. He did not believe in class analysis, but intuitively and intellectually grasped the link between caste and class in India.
The recent period of socio-political development in India has seen a blossoming of Hindutva and a majority chauvinist ideological and political offensive which can only be classified as extremist in relation to national unity. At this juncture, Dr Ambedkar's fearless analysis of the caste system, of chaturvarnya, of notions of pollution, of unalterable or rigid social hierarchy and so forth, and of the implications of the hegemony of theshastras must be read, re-read and made part of a national debate. His major theoretical exposition of such questions is contained in a 1936 presidential address which stirred up a hornet's nest, the radical "Annihilation of Caste". This ideological offering to the building of a new India must be ranked on a par with his signal and justly celebrated contribution to the making of a Republican Constitution.
In this work, Dr Ambedkar emphasised the anti-social, anti-progress character of an unjust social order as well as its vital connection, through networks of force and ideology, with political power. The caste system, in his analysis, militated against fraternity, "sanghatan and cooperation for a good cause", public charity and broad-based virtue and morality. "Chaturvarnya must fail for the very reason for which Plato's Republic must fail," warned the seriously read intellectual as social rebel. He pointed out that "the lower classes of Hindus" were "completely disabled for direct action on account of a wretched system". He asserted: "There cannot be a more degrading system of social organisation. ... It is the system which deadens, paralyses and cripples the people from helpful activity." He attempted to follow through the implications of this system in the political sphere. To him the real remedy was "to destroy the belief in the sanctity of the shastras" and their caste-borne tyranny.
One battle in which social orthodoxy and opportunist politics allied to defeat progress was the instructive fight over the Hindu Code Bill in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The leading author of the Constitution led the effort to institute a reasonably forward-looking and egalitarian Hindu Code law (especially from the standpoint of women), but it was sabotaged by orthodox elements. The Congress party, despite Nehru's claim to rationality and progressivism, refused to support the Bill.
The Indian Trade Union Movement
Source: Labour Monthly, Vol. 9, October 1927, No. 10.
Transcription: Ted Crawford
HTML Markup: Brian Reid
Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2009). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit "Marxists Internet Archive" as your source.
[The author of the following very informative article, who has made a first-hand study of the Indian trade union movement, has recently been committed for trial in Bombay as the alleged author of a pamphlet, "India and China," now declared seditious.]
It is commonly said, indeed so commonly that the phrase becomes mechanical, that the Indian Trade Union Movement "is still in its infancy." The present writer has frequently had occasion to combat the use of this phrase, not so much because it is untrue, as because it is misused. Every kind of mistaken policy, sheer inactivity, sectarianism, abstention from politics, are all excused on the same plea. And, on the other hand, it conveys the idea that the only policy for Indian Labour is slow, patient progress on the present lines. It is not intended to deny the truth of what is meant by the statement, namely that Indian labour organisation is poor by Western standards. But the analysis of the situation implied by it is inadequate. It is the thesis of this article that Indian unionism is in its second stage, in which it will remain until there come into being the conditions necessary for the next stage. That these conditions will ripen fairly soon is also expected, and indeed the beginnings are already to be seen.
The broad facts of the present position have recently been given very completely by Mr. Joshi in his pamphlet, The Trade Union Movement in India, and the figures in the table below are taken from it. Though necessarily based to some extent on guesswork they are as sound as can be obtained and are near enough in any case for the present purpose.
Of the population of just over 300,000,000, 138,000,000 are taken to be workers, divided according to occupations as follows: Agriculture, 100,000,000; industry, with mining, 15,517,000; transport, 1,900,000; commerce, 8,000,000; domestic, 2,500,000; public services, 4,000,000. The more detailed facts are arranged under columns: (a) estimated number of wage- earning employees, (b) wage-earners in organised parts of occupations, or such as can be organised in trade unions, (c) number of unions in existence, (d) total membership.
WAGE EARNERS AND TRADE UNIONISTS IN INDIA
82,000 (glass, &c.)
6,000 1,000 15,000
(wood, leather, chemicals
food, clothing, building, gas, furniture, &c.)
100,000 docks &c.,
The distribution by provinces is also important. In 1925 the numbers of workers in factories subject to the Indian Factories Act were: In Bengal, 551,342; Bombay, 370,460; Madras, 123,563; Burma, 97,346; U.P., 78,942; Bihar and Orissa, 73,461; C.P. and Berar, 67,104; Punjab, 53,533; Assam, 48,697. Others, 30,330. Total, 1,494,958.
Government employees, railwaymen, &c., will be distributed roughly according to population. The number of trade unionists by provinces is more difficult to state, but is approximately as follows: Bombay (June, 1927), 76,000; Bengal, probably 50,000; Madras, about 25,000; others up to a few thousands each. The total number of unions affiliated to the All-India Trades Union Congress is now 60, with 125,000 members.
It is also necessary to show roughly how the present situation is related to the past. Organisation on a large scale practically began in 1918, and at the first All-India Trades Union Congress, in Bombay, October, 1920, sixty unions were affiliated, having 140,000 members, while it was claimed that the total membership of unions expressing sympathy, &c., was 500,000. At the second Congress, at Jharria, November, 1921, it was stated that 1,000,000 affiliated members were represented. It is doubtful if these numbers were actually even approached, but it is certain that there was a very big fall after 1922. At the end of 1924, only eight unions were affiliated, but by the time of the fifth Congress, in Bombay, February, 1925, there were thirty-one unions with perhaps 80,000 members. The number has risen steadily from that time.
The more exact figures compiled by the Labour Office for the Bombay Government show the same tendency. There were in the Presidency in June, 1922, twenty-two unions with 58,000 members; in September, 1923, nineteen unions with 42,000 members; September, 1924, twenty-one with 47,000 members, and since then a fairly steady rise to the present figures: sixty-six unions with 76,000 members.
The Bombay Government commented on these facts in its criticism, dated January, 1925, of the draft Trade Unions Bill.
It cannot be denied that the progress of Trade Unionism in this Presidency is at the best stationary at the present moment . . . . the movement seems to be able to show solid progress only in Ahmedabad. The quarterly review . . . . is a tale of lassitude and disillusionment. The present slump in the movement is due largely to falling prices and rising wages.
The "slump" in the movement after 1922 would be better shown by statistics of industrial disputes. The period, 1919-22, saw a very intense "strike wave," which fell away almost to nothing by 1924. In the character of the Congresses also, a similar contrast is to be seen between those days and the present. The first two Congresses were practically huge demonstrations. At Jharria there were several thousand delegates, and a strike was held specially for the occasion in the local coalfield. Many of the best-known political leaders of the country were present at both Congresses, and took active part. In the Trades Union Congress, which the present writer attended in March this year, the number of delegates was under fifty, not more than ten of whom were workers. Perhaps a score or so of members of the public were present, while as the place was Delhi, a few Congress leaders "dropped in," but said nothing.
Mr. R.K. Das, in his book The Labour Movement in India (1923), remarks that, while in the first years of intense activity the unions were mainly industrial in type, in the later period in which he was writing, craft unions also began to appear. This is an important observation, for though the unions which were then making their appearance, and by this time are the predominant type, are not craft unions in the strict sense, they do closely resemble craft unions in many ways. The figures of unions for the whole country, and especially for the Bombay Presidency, show a large increase recently in the number of unions, but a fall in the average membership, and this is characteristic.
The union movement of 1919-22, and that of 1924-27, are really quite distinct in organisation, composition, and aims, as well as in magnitude and methods. The difference has been compared plausibly with that which came about in the British movement between the 'thirties and the 'sixties of last century. The former movement was the product of a period of universal instability and excitement, and was fundamentally a revolutionary response to a revolutionary situation. The economic circumstances were enough to bring about universal discontent and protest. But the workers were also undoubtedly affected by the political excitement of the time. Thus, during the famous pilgrimage in 1921 of the primitive and ignorant plantation "coolies" of Assam and Bengal, some hundreds of them were suddenly and brutally cleared out of the Chandpur station yard at midnight by armed soldiers. They made no resistance, but shouted "Mahatma Gandhi ki jai." The revolutionary consciousness was of course generally extremely dim, but there can be no doubt that it was present. Strikes took place in every part of the country in all kinds of occupations. There was in most cases no organisation before the strike, but some kind of union was often established afterwards. All grades of workers took part. Frequently the demands of the strikers were not formulated until they had been out for some days, and they were then of an "extravagant" nature. The chief concrete demand was nearly always for wage increases, with reduction of hours a close second, but there were others often not of an economic character. The unions then formed were what would be expected from the circumstances of their origin. They were industrial in type, but usually covered only a restricted area. They often had no regular membership, payments, &c., and have been, in fact, accurately described as "little more than strike committees."
There are now few remnants of those days. The present movement operates in conditions of economic stability and political quiescence. Only in Bombay in the last two or three years has the depression in the cotton industry brought about a general tendency towards worsening of conditions. But the pressure has only sufficed to give a spurt to organisations of the present type.
The present movement, as has been remarked, while not strictly a craft unionism,1 is similar in several respects to a typical craft movement, such as that in Britain in the middle of the last century. It is mainly a movement of the upper grades of workers for extremely limited aims. The organisation is fairly thorough, but narrow as regards activities, the classes of workers involved, and the areas from which they are drawn. There is little inter-union organisation or solidarity, little class-consciousness, and a general avoidance of political activity.
It is proposed here to describe the trade union movement as the writer has hitherto seen it, in a little greater detail, in the hope that it will be of interest to Western readers, and will give some idea of present conditions and possibilities of development. The writer's observations are limited to the Bombay Presidency and the Punjab, but conversations and published reports enable it to be said that statements applicable to those Provinces are fairly sound in regard to the rest of India, apart, perhaps, from Madras.
There are several unions which aim at covering the whole of India. They are mainly of long standing, contain only upper grade workers, and remain practically aloof from the general movement.2 The All-India Postal and R.M.S. Association and the All-India Postal and Lower Grade Staff Union are loose federations of provincial and local unions. In some places one or other is split, so that in these towns there are three Postal unions with perhaps not more than one or two hundred members each. Poona and Baroda are examples. The Association was founded in 1906, and is well established, with nearly 40,000 members and a fund of perhaps a lakh of rupees. The Union arose from local unions founded in 1918 and later. Both are recognised by the Government.
The All-India Telegraph Association was founded in 1908, and has about 3,000 members and substantial funds. A split occurred in 1923, when the All-India Telegraph Union was formed. The Association contains all the Anglo-Indian and European members, while the Union has only Indians. The lower grade employees have several separate local unions.
There are other All-India federations such as that of the Currency Office Associations.
The Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants of India and Burma has 2,250 members, almost all Anglo-Indians and Europeans (drivers, guards, &c.). It was founded in 1898, and is thus the oldest union in India. It is strictly non-political and tends to separate its members from other railway employees. It tried, successfully, to keep its members at work during the N.W. Railway strike of 1925. There should also be mentioned the All-India Railwaymen's Federation, founded in 1925, after similar attempts had been made in 1921. It includes most of the railway unions, but its existence is only nominal. During the N.W.R. strike of 1925 it sent its secretary to the scene of action, but, according to Mr. Miller's report, he confined himself to mediation, and when that failed, to delivering defeatist speeches. During the B.N.R. strike of this year the federation was entirely inactive.
The G.I.P. railway has at present four separate unions, all situated at Bombay. One is for the Bombay shops, two for the headquarters clerical staff, and one for the suburban stationmasters, clerks, &c. The total membership is 5,000 to 6,000. The railway employs in all over 100,000 men. It is perhaps not an accident that the shop union, while perhaps less successful than the others in remedying grievances, &c., is the only one affiliated to the T.U.C. or the Central Labour Board, and has recently established a branch at Kalyan. The B.B.C.I. Railway has three separate unions, one with about 2,000 shopmen at Bombay, one with 6,000 members of all grades at Ahmedabad, and one at Ajmer. Even the N.W.R. has had separate unions at Karachi and Sukkur, but these are dying out. A separate union of railway clerks has recently been formed at Lahore, but it adopted Mr. Miller as its president, and is the result rather of discontent with the old union than of sectarian aims. Other militants, headed by Miller, have also recently broken away from this union and begun to organise a new one.
The N.W.R. union, at one time probably the most powerful union in Asia, really requires separate treatment. It began to organise in 1920, and in the same year fought a long and successful strike. The membership soon afterwards reached 85,000, out of about 125,000 then employed, and included all grades, among them a substantial proportion of the Europeans. It has fallen since then, with a temporary revival in 1925, owing partly to the general stabilisation of conditions, but also because of the special measures taken against it on account of the strategic importance of the line. Mr. Miller was imprisoned, other leading members were suborned, "tame" rival unions started, and so on. The paying membership of the existing recognised union is about 2,000.
Unions are now in most cases confined practically if not formally to, upper or skilled grades of workers. Thus, the Bombay Port Trust has three unions with a purely theoretical joint committee), one for the 600 men on the Port Trust Railway, one for the 1,000 workshopmen, &c., and one for the 1,600 tally clerks, shed superintendents, &c. And this last is the most successful and is the only one "recognised." But the 2,000 or more dock labourers are entirely unorganised. Even in these unions the upper grades are more strongly represented than the lower. The same thing applies in a less degree to the railway shop unions, and to others.
Thus, the Bombay Port Trust Docks Staff Union shows the following composition (May, 1927):—
No. in Union
Wage rates (Rs. per mth.)
125, 175, 225 (3 grades)
Similarly with the G.I.P. Railway Workmen's Union, which has the following membership (roughly) in the Matunga shops:—
No. in Union
Wage rates (Rs. per mth.)
This is partly the result of the natural tendency of the unions to fall into the hands of the more literate members, who in present circumstances do not urgently require the strength to be derived from the solidarity of the lower grades. It is one aspect also of the general difficulty of organising the more illiterate workers, which is exemplified by the failure yet to establish a really successful union in the Bombay textile industry. There are here two unions, the Bombay Textile Labour Union, founded January 1, 1926, which has about 7,500 members, and the Girni Kamgar Mahamandal (Mill Workers' Association), founded 1923, with about 3,000. The total number employed is about 150,000. Even the Ahmedabad Textile Workers' Union, with all its resources and traditions, is finding it difficult to keep its members. Though 20,000 strong in 1922, and successful in regaining nearly 15,000 members in two years after the strike of 1923, it is now losing members, and has about 11,000 (out of over 50,000). Similarly the textile unions at Broach and Sholapur have disappeared, though on the other hand one has been recently established at Indore. The migratory character of mill labour, of which much has been said, is decreasing, and is no longer of much importance, at any rate in Bombay.
Many other classes of workers of similar skill and education remain practically or wholly unorganised—in Bombay, building, oil, gas, tramway, and other workers, and generally miners, jute workers, &c. Even when organised, either in their own or in predominantly upper grade unions, workers of this kind tend to form a "floating population" in the union. All textile unions say the same thing. The Bombay Textile Labour Union had in January, 1926, 6,000 members. It increased to over 9,000 by the end of the year, but again fell to just under 7,500 in June, 1927. The Girni Kamgar Mahamandal speaks of a "steady stream of members through the union."
The aims of the present movement are very limited. Though petitions and memoranda are continually being presented on general grievances, such as wages and hours, they are almost always unsuccessful, and there are not the spirit or material resources necessary to conduct a struggle for improvements. Strikes occur fairly frequently, mainly on account of attempts to worsen conditions, or victimisation, which is very common. Employers and managers are almost always arbitrary and provocative in their attitude, except when dealing with superior grades.
The efforts of unions are, therefore, directed mainly towards the remedying of individual complaints, and in this the upper grades are markedly more successful than the lower. The usual complaints are excessive fines, arbitrary dismissals, irregularities in promotions due to bribery and favouritism, &c.
There is a general sentiment in favour of benefit funds. The older unions, especially the A.S.R.S., have them in plenty, but the new unions and the customary contributions (1 to 8 annas per month) are too small to make them generally successful. Many unions already have Death Benefit schemes, and voluntary benefits with special subscriptions are becoming more common.
A few unions conduct educational classes for their members, the Girni Kamgar Mahamandal, the Bombay Postal and Lower Grade Staff Union, and the Ahmedabad Union in particular. (The last-named runs also temperance work, a research department, a hospital, &c.). But the education provided is in all cases the "three R's" (plus religious instruction at Ahmedabad). Mr. Joshi has attempted an inter-union class in the history and principles of Trade Unionism, but without great success.
The organisation of unions is commonly good for the very limited purposes. The proportion of actual to possible members is often high, at any rate for upper grade workers. A committee is appointed in the early stages, usually representative of all grades, and is re-elected at annual meetings. (It is not unusual, after the first month or two, for the annual meetings to be the only occasions on which the mass of members meet or take any part, save payment.) The active officers, owing to the danger of victimisation, are often "outsiders." The union has an office, usually a small room with a typewriter. These are sometimes shared with another union, especially in Bombay, where unions are numerous and rooms expensive. The older and bigger unions have permanent officials, and many of the newer unions in Bombay employ for part of their time the paid servants of the Social Service League or the Central Labour Board. The committees in most cases meet regularly and conduct the small amount of routine business. Rules and reports are published, in many cases in vernacular and English editions. The older unions publish journals, which rival their European counterparts in dullness, and some of the newer ones publish occasional bulletins. Contributions are usually collected at the place of work by committee members, and receipts are passed. A few unions adopt the system of membership cards. The books are in most cases well kept. In short, "Strict Business" might be the motto of Indian Trade Unionism.
A warning should at once be uttered against accepting this as a picture of the movement as a whole. It is correct of those unions of the upper grade type, which are active, as nearly all the Bombay unions are at the moment. But in a few cases there, and in many elsewhere, when demands are temporarily satisfied, or further advance is found to be impossible, or a severe defeat has been suffered, stagnation sets in. The union may simply cease to work, or if individuals try to keep it going, members drop a way. There is little or nothing, material or moral, to keep them together.
It is typical of social conditions generally that women's organisation hardly exists. Women are employed in large numbers, but as lower grade workers. The Girni Kamgar Mahamandal has about twenty women members, and there are a few organised in Ahmedabad and Bengal (jute workers).
Inter-union organisation is not of importance. The All-India T.U.C. contains a majority of the organised workers, though not of the unions. It and its subsidiary bodies, the Provincial Federations (in Bengal, Bombay and Madras, and in a nebulous form in the Central Provinces and the Punjab) exist mainly because they are the representatives of the labour movement officially recognised by the Central and (sometimes) by the Provincial Governments. Owing to the great distances and the general poverty of the movement, meetings can seldom be held between Congresses, and the work done is mainly of a routine character. The members of the unions take little interest in its doings, and if they send delegates they do not usually receive reports.
There is only one body in the country which can in any way be compared to a Trades Council, the Central Labour Board of Bombay.3 And that is solely because of its constitution. It does not work as a Trades Council. It, or rather Mr. Jhabvala, organises separate unions, and sometimes conducts temperance propaganda. The former he does as provincial organiser for the T.U.C., the latter as secretary of the Central Labour Board.
There is commonly great solidarity among members of the same union, especially of the same grade, and strikes often result from this. But general class-consciousness is seldom to be noticed, except among lower grade workers. It may be mentioned that the writer was present at a meeting of railway workers at the time of the agitation against the dispatch of Indian troops to China, and although the men in question have grounds for grievance against the Chinese, who are employed in the railway on the same work for higher pay, they brought forward a young Chinese worker and cheered him loudly as a demonstration of class solidarity.
The first May-day demonstration was held in Bombay this year, and was attended mainly by municipal-, mill-, and railway-men, i.e., by lower and middle grade workers. (It is possible that the upper grade men were kept away by their characteristic petit-bourgeois "respectability complexes.") It should be said that men of the lower grades, though generally unorganised, have some knowledge of what the Labour Movement means. Every worker in Bombay appears to know and respect Jhabvala, just as all Punjab workers know Miller.
A word should be said on the difficulties in labour organisation arising from differences of language, religion, &c. They are no doubt obstructions, but are not as important as is commonly thought in Europe, even in the Punjab, where communal feeling is at its worst.4 The chief difficulty of this nature is due to the relatively large differences in the wage rates of various grades (see tables on page 613). It comes about through the greater effectiveness of upper grade workers in pressing their claims, through the scarcity of persons with elementary or technical education, and partly, no doubt, through a deliberate dividing policy.
The influence of "outsiders" as officials and leaders is a delicate question, and one of great importance. They are certainly necessary, especially for lower grade unions, because of general illiteracy and the risk of victimisation. Only one such union, the Girni Kamgar Mahamandal, is carried on nominally without outside helpers. They tend to be eliminated for practical purposes by upper grade unions, when the need for them disappears. But it is the writer's impression that the present "outsiders" as a whole deserve their bad name. Many enter the movement with interested motives, and though they may promote efficiency they are not to be relied upon. A notorious case is that of the B.N. Railway strike of this year. Even if, as is often the case, their motives are purely unselfish, they generally strengthen the sectarian and otherwise reactionary tendencies to which the movement is so prone. The Ahmedabad Union is perhaps the worst case. Here the President is an ordinary humanitarian, a member of a mill-owning family, and a conscious advocate of class-collaboration. Other officials, though they see something of its dangers, allow themselves to be completely led by Gandhi, whose policy is (in most respects, but not all) the same.
Bombay is blessed with disinterested and not unprogressive leaders. The Punjab is not so fortunate. The policy of the officially recognised body is one of sheer servility. Bengal has officials of both kinds, and has for years been divided by quarrels, which have more than once split unions, probably of purely personal origin. Many of the unions seem to be of the type described by Mr. Tom Johnston in his report on the jute industry. Three out of the four unions in that industry were bogus, and served merely to advertise their presidents. Madras has leaders who do not commit the usual error of abstaining from political activity, but their politics is not that of the working class. A Labour Party has been established which runs candidates in local elections. These make the grave mistake (in present circumstances) of opposing Congress candidates. The Party in fact seems to be entirely for electoral purposes, which are of very minor importance for labour at the present stage, and to have been organised in support of the reactionary remnants of the Home Rule League.
The acknowledged national leader of the trade union movement is Mr. N.M. Joshi, the General Secretary of the Trade Union Congress. With all respect it must be said that he is as much out of place in his position as, let as say, Mr. Sidney Webb would be as Secretary of the Miners' Federation. He carries on his work with the same disinterested care that Mr. Webb would no doubt devote to the position suggested, and undoubtedly does the best that is possible along his lines. But his function is observation, research and the drafting of Bills, not leadership.
Enough has now been said to give some idea of the movement as it stands. It is clear that the most important circumstances determining the present phase are the economic stability and the political deadness—the slow collapse of bourgeois nationalism, and the continued paralysis of the petit-bourgeoisie.
India can expect on general grounds a prosperous industrial future. But Indian industry and economics generally are still very closely dependent upon Britain, which is becoming more and more a broken reed in these matters. And it is almost certain that the immediate political future of the British Empire, and Asia generally, is a stormy one. It seems in any case safe to prophesy that the decades of peaceful progress, which many Indian leaders, apparently on the example of Britain, appear to expect, will not materialise. But it is even safer to predict that the present political quiescence in the country will not last for more than a year or two. The petit-bourgeoisie in the national movement are beginning to revolt against the bourgeois leadership, the last remnants of which are fast going over to the Imperialist camp, in preparation for the Statutory Commission. It is to be expected, in view of the generally difficult position of British capitalism, that they will not be disappointed. Substantial concessions, probably "Dominion Status," &c., will be offered, and obviously the whole of the bourgeois political school will accept them thankfully. All pretence of Swarajist opposition will probably disappear fairly quickly. The mantle of nationalism will fall upon the shoulders of the petit-bourgeoisie, who will be forced to seek the assistance of the Labour Movement. (The example of Ireland must not be taken too seriously, as there the civil war upset the "normal" course of events.) The emergence of the Workers' and Peasants' Parties, of which four,5 counting the Young India Society of the Punjab, now in existence, shows this tendency. They have already made some impression upon the Labour Movement. Owing partly to their influence the T.U.C. at its last session carried a resolution in favour of industrial unionism. Unfortunately, a last-minute amendment by a railway representative was accepted, substituting "federations of unions" for "unions." Thus the resolution, which might have had some little effect, was rendered absolutely useless, by the action of the industry which stood most to gain, at the moment, from its application.
In Bombay in particular, the Workers' and Peasants' Party is carrying on propaganda for greater activity in the unions (some unions. have now commenced monthly general meetings) and for the transformation of the Central Labour Board into a genuine Trades Council, &c. It is clear from what has been said above that they will have largely to depend upon what has here been called "lower grade" labour, and the solution of the still unsolved problem of the organisation of the great mass of Indian Labour probably lies with them.
There is a general realisation in political circles of the future importance of the Labour Movement, and though nothing is done, Congress leaders speak more frequently than ever of Labour work. At the Delhi Congress, two leaders, Mr. Chaman Lal and Lala Lajpat Rai, who had been out of touch with labour for some years, reappeared. The former rejoined the movement because, after three years of Swarajist politics, he realises that bourgeois nationalism is dead, and that the future conduct of the struggle will depend upon Labour. The latter came for exactly the contrary reason, that he saw the future danger, for the bourgeoisie, and wished to check it in time.6 The struggle between Nationalism and Imperialism for the possession of the Labour Movement has begun. When it has fully opened out, the next great stage in the history of Indian Labour will have commenced.
1. Practically the only pure craft unions, apart from the Mechanical Engineers' Association of Akola, which could almost be called a professional association, are those constituting the Ahmedabad Textile Workers' Union. It is significant of the atmosphere in which this union, and indeed the movement generally, works, that craft unionism having been introduced, some workers demand more of it than their officials are willing to give them.
2. Only the Bombay section of the Postmen's Union has been affiliated to the T.U.C., and has recently withdrawn because of the protest made by the Delhi T.U.C. against the dispatch of Indian troops to China. About the same time the Department of Posts and Telegraphs announced that unions of its employees must not affiliate to the T.U.C., as the latter is a political body.
3. The Provincial Federations of course tend to become in practice confined to Madras City, Calcutta, &c. And there is in Rangoon a general labour union with 10,000 members from different industries. It appears to be an unusually successful lower grade organisation, and is probably in practice nearer to a genuine Trades Council than any other.
4. Efforts are occasionally made by employers to arouse communal passions, e.g., recently in the Bombay Port Trust Docks Staff Union, and previously in the N.W.R. union. Neither had any success. In fact only three cases have come to the writer's notice. The Moslems have recently withdrawn almost en bloc from the Ahmedabad Weavers' Union. The Punjab Press Workers' Union is said to have collapsed last year from this cause, but it was in any case a feeble body. The Indian Seamen's Union, Bombay, has split nominally on this ground. Many of the saloon crews (Indian Christians, mainly Goanese) have withdrawn to form a new union, as the old one also contains engine and deck hands (non-Christians, mainly Mohammedans). Communal feeling is present, but the split was promoted by the shipowners and brokers, because the old union was opening its doors to the other crews, and was trying to extend its activities beyond the traditional limits of a mere employment bureau. The differences which often separate Indians from Anglo-Indians and Europeans are economic. The latter are invariably privileged, and often paid much higher rates.
5. In Bengal, Bombay, Rajputana (Ajmer) and the Punjab. The Punjab Society was the first to organise a May-day demonstration in India, in Lahore in 1926. The Bombay Party has established itself as leader of the opposition in the Bombay Provincial Congress Committee. It organised the May-day demonstration this year, and is leading the present (end of August) strike of protest against the attempt to make the weavers in some mills work three looms instead of two.
6. Cf. his remarks in the People (Lahore, March 20, 1927) on the Delhi session of the Trades Union Congress: "It (the Labour Movement) is a tender plant which requires careful nursing—careful watering and protection from the rigours of the climate. . . . What the Indian worker wants is not dogma, but help in organising, and in the redress of his grievances against the Government and the employers. To feed him on doctrines . . . . is to lead him astray."
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Labour union" redirects here. For the Polish political party, see Labour Union (Poland). For the Canadian political party, see Union Labour.
Demonstrators surrounded by soldiers during the Lawrence textile strike in 1912.
A trade union (British English) or labor union (American English) is an organization of workers who have banded together to achieve common goals such as better working conditions. The trade union, through its leadership, bargains with the employer on behalf of union members (rank and file members) and negotiateslabour contracts (collective bargaining) with employers. This may include the negotiation of wages, work rules, complaint procedures, rules governing hiring, firing and promotion of workers, benefits, workplace safety and policies. The agreements negotiated by the union leaders are binding on the rank and file members and the employer and in some cases on other non-member workers.
Originating in Europe, trade unions became popular in many countries during the Industrial Revolution, when the lack of skill necessary to perform most jobs shifted employment bargaining power almost completely to the employers' side, causing many workers to be mistreated and underpaid. Trade union organisations may be composed of individual workers, professionals, past workers, or the unemployed. The most common, but by no means only, purpose of these organizations is "maintaining or improving the conditions of theiremployment".
Over the last three hundred years, many trade unions have developed into a number of forms, influenced by differing political objectives. Activities of trade unions vary, but may include:
- Provision of benefits to members: Early trade unions, like Friendly Societies, often provided a range of benefits to insure members against unemployment, ill health, old age and funeral expenses. In many developed countries, these functions have been assumed by the state; however, the provision of professional training, legal advice and representation for members is still an important benefit of trade union membership.
- Political activity: Trade unions may promote legislation favorable to the interests of their members or workers as a whole. To this end they may pursue campaigns, undertake lobbying, or financially support individual candidates or parties (such as the Labour Party in Britain) for public office.
The origins of unions' existence can be traced from the eighteenth century, where the rapid expansion of industrial society drew women, children, rural workers, and immigrants to the work force in numbers and in new roles. This pool of unskilled and semi-skilled labour spontaneously organized in fits and starts throughout its beginnings, and would later be an important arena for the development of trade unions. Trade unions as such were endorsed by the Catholic Church towards the end of the 19th Century. Pope Leo XIII in his 'Magna Carta': Rerum Novarum, spoke against the atrocities workers faced and demanded that workers should be granted certain rights and safety regulations. 
 Origins and early history
Trade unions have sometimes been seen as successors to the guilds of medieval Europe, though the relationship between the two is disputed. Medieval guilds existed to protect and enhance their members' livelihoods through controlling the instructional capital of artisanship and the progression of members fromapprentice to craftsman, journeyman, and eventually to master and grandmaster of their craft. A trade union might include workers from only one trade or craft, or might combine several or all the workers in one company or industry.
Trade unions and/or collective bargaining were outlawed from no later than the middle of the fourteenth century when the Ordinance of Labourers was enacted in the Kingdom of England. Union organizing would eventually be outlawed everywhere and remain so until the middle of the nineteenth century.
Since the publication of the History of Trade Unionism (1894) by Sidney and Beatrice Webb, the predominant historical view is that a trade union "is a continuous association of wage earners for the purpose of maintaining or improving the conditions of their employment." A modern definition by the Australian Bureau of Statistics states that a trade union is "an organization consisting predominantly of employees, the principal activities of which include the negotiation of rates of pay and conditions of employment for its members."
Yet historian R.A. Leeson, in United we Stand (1971), said:
Two conflicting views of the trade-union movement strove for ascendancy in the nineteenth century: one the defensive-restrictive guild-craft tradition passed down through journeymen's clubs and friendly societies, ... the other the aggressive-expansionist drive to unite all 'laboring men and women' for a 'different order of things'.
Recent historical research by Bob James [disambiguation needed] in Craft, Trade or Mystery (2001) puts forward the view that trade unions are part of a broader movement of benefit societies, which includes medieval guilds, Freemasons, Oddfellows, friendly societies, and other fraternal organizations.
The 18th century economist Adam Smith noted the imbalance in the rights of workers in regards to owners (or "masters"). In The Wealth of Nations, Book I, chapter 8, Smith wrote:
We rarely hear, it has been said, of the combination of masters, though frequently of those of workmen. But whoever imagines, upon this account, that masters rarely combine, is as ignorant of the world as of the subject. Masters are always and everywhere in a sort of tacit, but constant and uniform combination, not to raise the wages of labor above their actual rate[.]
When workers combine, masters ... never cease to call aloud for the assistance of the civil magistrate, and the rigorous execution of those laws which have been enacted with so much severity against the combination of servants, laborers, and journeymen.
As Smith noted, unions were illegal for many years in most countries (and Smith argued that schemes to fix wages or prices, by employees or employers, should be). There were severe penalties for attempting to organize unions, up to and including execution. Despite this, unions were formed and began to acquirepolitical power, eventually resulting in a body of labor law that not only legalized organizing efforts, but codified the relationship between employers and those employees organized into unions. Even after the legitimization of trade unions there was opposition, as the case of the Tolpuddle Martyrs shows.
The right to join a trade union is mentioned in article 23, subsection 4 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), which also states in article 20, subsection 2 that "No one may be compelled to belong to an association". Prohibiting a person from joining or forming a union, as well as forcing a person to do the same (e.g. "closed shops" or "union shops", see below), whether by a government or by a business, is generally considered a human rights abuse. Similar allegations can be leveled if an employer discriminates based on trade union membership. Attempts by an employer, often with the help of outside agencies, to prevent union membership amongst their staff is known as union busting.
In France, Germany, and other European countries, socialist parties and democrats played a prominent role in forming and building up trade unions, especially from the 1870s onwards. This stood in contrast to the British experience, where moderate New Model Unions dominated the union movement from the mid-nineteenth century and where trade unionism was stronger than the political labor movement until the formation and growth of the Labour Party in the early years of the twentieth century.
 Unions in the United States
 19th Century American Unionism
In the early 1800s many men from large cities put together the organization which we now call the Trade Union Movement. Individuals who were members of unions at this time were skilled, experienced, and knew how to get the job done. Their main reasoning for starting this movement was to put on strikes. However, they did not have enough men to fulfill their needs and the unions which began this trendy movement, collapsed quickly. The Mechanics' Union Trade Association was the next approach to bring workers together. In 1827, this union was the first U.S. labor organization which brought together workers of divergent occupations. This was "the first city-wide federation of American workers, which recognized that all labor, regardless of trades, had common problems that could be solved only by united effort as a class." This organization took off when carpentry workers from Philadelphia went on strike to protest their pay wages and working hours. This union strike was only a premonition of what was to come in the future.
Besides acting to raise wages and improve working conditions, the federations espoused certain social reforms, such as the institution of free public education, the abolition of imprisonment for debt, and the adoption of universal manhood suffrage. Perhaps the most important effect of these early unions was their introduction of political action.
Workers realized what unionism was all about through the configuration of mechanics association and many people followed in their footsteps. The strike gave others hope that they could get their concerns out by word of mouth. Before this time many people did not speak about their concerns because of the lack of bodies. However, with more people comes more confidence. Strikes were a new way of speaking your mind and getting things accomplished.
The next established union which made an impact on the trade movement was the Grand National Consolidated Trade Union. This union was founded in 1834 as the first domestic association. However, this union was short lived due to the panic of 1837. "[Andrew] Jackson thought the Bank of the United States hurt ordinary citizens by exercising too much control over credit and economic opportunity, and he succeeded in shutting it down. But the state banks' reckless credit policies led to massive speculation in Western lands. By 1837, after Van Buren had become president, banks were clearly in trouble. Some began to close, businesses began to fail, and thousands of people lost their land."  This collapse of financial support and businesses left workers unemployed. Many of these workers, who became affected by the 1837 disaster, were members of a union. It was very hard for them to stay together in an economic hardship and the trade union movement came to a bump in the road. But the economy was restored by the early 1840s and trade unions started doing better. National labor unions were forming, different than ones in the past, consisting now of members of the same occupation.
The work force was drastically impacted by the Civil War and the economy was thriving. Many workers gained employment because of this economic boom and unions increased greatly. "More than 30 national craft unions were established during the 1860s and early '70s." One of the significant national craft unions to be formed during this time was the National Labor Union (NLU). It was created in 1866 and included many types of workers. Although relatively short-lived, the NLU paved the way for future American unions. Following the decline of the NLU, the Knights of Labor became the leading countrywide union in the 1860s. This union did not include Chinese, and partially included black people and women.
 Knights of Labor
Main article: Knights of Labor
The Noble and Holy Order of the Knights of Labor (KOL) was founded in Philadelphia in 1869 by Uriah Stephens and six other men. The union was formed for the purpose of organizing, educating and directing the power of the industrial masses, according to their Constitution of 1878. The Knights gathered people to join the Order who believed in creating "the greatest good to the greatest amount of people". The Knights took their set goals very seriously. Some of which consisted of "productive work, civic responsibility, education, a wholesome family life, temperance, and self-improvement."
The Knights of Labor worked as a secret fraternal society until 1881. The union grew slowly until the economic depression of the 1870s, when large numbers of workers joined the organization. The Knights only permitted certain groups of individuals into their Order which promoted social division amongst the people around them. Bankers, speculators, lawyers, liquor dealers, gamblers, and teachers were all excluded from the union. These workers were known as the "non-producers" because their jobs did not entail physical labor. Factory workers and business men were known as the "producers" because their job constructed a physical product. The working force producers were welcomed into the Order. Women were also welcome to join the Knights, as well as black workers by the year 1883. However, Asians were excluded. In November 1885, the Knights of a Washington city pushed to get rid of their Asian population. The knights were strongly for the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 because it greatly helped them deteriorate the Asian community. "The Act required the few non-laborers who sought entry to obtain certification from the Chinese government that they were qualified to immigrate. But this group found it increasingly difficult to prove that they were not laborers because the 1882 act defined excludables as 'skilled and unskilled laborers and Chinese employed in mining.' Thus very few Chinese could enter the country under the 1882 law." 
The act also stated that if an Asian left the country, they needed a certificate to re-enter.
Although Asians were not welcomed in the union, black workers who joined the union brought a large number of blacks into the white labor movement. In 1886, the Union exceeded 700,000 members, 60,000 of them black. The Knights were told that they "broke the walls of prejudice"; the "color line had been broken and black and white were found working in the same cause. The American Federation of Labor (AFL),founded by Samuel Gompers, was established due to the vexation of many Knights who parted from the KOL. Many Knights joined the AFL because they set themselves apart from the KOL. They "tried to teach the American wage-earner that he was a wage-earner first and a bricklayer, carpenter, miner [...] after. This meant that the Order was teaching something that was not so in the hope that sometime it would be.' But the AFL affiliates organized carpenters as carpenters, bricklayers as bricklayers, and so forth, teaching them all to place their own craft interests before those of other workers."  The AFL also differed from the KOL because it only allowed associations to be formed from workers and workers were the only people permitted to join them. Unlike the AFL, the knights also allowed small businesses to join. A small business is "An independently owned and operated business that is not dominant in its field of operation and conforms to standards set by the Small Business Administration or by state law regarding number of employees and yearly income called also small business concern." Since the knights allowed an array of members into their association, they ended up getting rid of many because they did not fit the title. However, the AFL was right behind them picking up their pieces. This was another way in which the AFL helped to destroy the Knights. Once an associate was no longer a knight, and they fit the description of an AFL member, they hunted them down and offered them a spot. Many times spots were offered to men who were still Knights. This allowed the AFL to grow very strong with a diverse set of members.
The diversity in the AFL faltered when many of the black members were excluded. Gompers only wanted skilled workers representing his union and many black people were not considered skilled. The AFL claimed to not exclude the black members because of their race but because they were not qualified for the part. "So as long as wages rose, and they did, hours fell, and they did, security increased, and it appeared to, the AFL could grow fat while neglecting millions of laborers doomed to lives of misery and want." Even black workers considered skilled enough to fit the part were generally excluded from the Union. The AFL conducted literacy tests which had the effect of excluding immigrants and blacks. Regardless of black members being excluded, the AFL was the most prevalent union federation in America before the mid 1940s. The union was composed of over 10 million members before it combined with the Congress of Industrial Organization (CIO).
 Congress of Industrial Organizations
Main article: Congress of Industrial Organizations
The CIO was put forth by John L. Lewis when troubles with the AFL persisted, after the death of Gompers in 1924. Many members of the union requested that they switch the rules which were laid out by Gompers. They wanted to support inexperienced workmen rather than only focusing on experienced workers of one occupation. John L. Lewis was the first member of the AFL to act upon this issue in 1935. He was the founder of the Committee for the Industrial Organization which was an original union branched from the AFL. The Committee for the Industrial Organization transformed into the Congress of Industrial Organization. "The Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) encompassed the largest sustained surge of worker organization in American history." In the 1930s, the CIO grabbed many of their member's attention through victorious strikes. In the 1935, employees of Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company formed their own union called the United Rubber Workers. The Rubber Workers went on strike in 1936 to protest an increase in product with lower pay wages. "There were forty-eight strikes in 1936 in which the strikers remained at their jobs for at least one day; in twenty-two of these work stoppages, involving 34,565 workers, the strikers stayed inside the plants for more than twenty-four hours." This tactic was called a "sit-down" strike which entailed workers to stop doing their job and sit in their place of employment. During these strikes, business owners were unable to bring in new workers to replace the ones who were on strike because they were still in their seats at the factory. This was unlike any strikes in the past. Before this time, workers showed their fury by leaving their factory and standing in picket lines.Walter Reuther was in control of the union at this time and moved forward to higher roles during 1955.
On May 5, 1955, labor delegates gathered in NY on behalf of 16 million workers, to witness and support the merger of The American Federation of Labor and The Congress of Industrial Organization. The merger is a result of 20 years of effort put forth by both the AFL and CIO presidents, George Meany and Walter Reuther. The gathered delegates applauded loudly when the time came to nominate officers for the new AFL-CIO. Reuther who was named one of the 37 vice presidents of the union, nominated Meany for President. After Meany's retirement in 1979, Lane Kirkland took over his position. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who was elected in 1952, was the first to publicly address and congratulate the new union, which was now the largest in the world.
In Eisenhower's telephone broadcast to the United States he acknowledged the impact union members had made to better the nation and one of these impacts was "the development of the American philosophy of labor." Eisenhower states three principles which he feels apply to the philosophy of labor. The first principles states that: "the ultimate values of mankind are spiritual; these values include liberty, human dignity, opportunity and equal rights and justice." Eisenhower was stating that every individual deserves a job with decent compensation, practical hours, and good working conditions that leave them feeling fulfilled. His second principle speaks of the economic interest of the employer and employee being a mutual prosperity. The employers and employees must work together in order for there to be the greatest amount of wealth for all. Workers have a right to strike when they feel their boundaries are being crossed and the best way for the employer to fix the employees unhappiness is to come to a mutual agreement. His last principle which he preached stated: "labor relations will be managed best when worked out in honest negotiation between employers and unions, without Government's unwarranted interference." Eisenhower was saying that when both parties cooperate and act in mature fashion, it will be easier to work out situations and a better outcome will result because of it. Once he was done delivering the speech, everyone across the U.S. knew of the new AFL-CIO whose "mission was to bring social and economic justice to our nation by enabling working people to have a voice on the job, in government, in a changing global economy and in their communities." 
This new alliance is made up of 56 nationwide and intercontinental labor unions. The unions which are a part of this alliance are composed of 2.5 million working Americans and 8.5 million other affiliated members. These members do not fall under one job title but they are very diversely spread out among the working area. Their jobs go from doctors to truck drivers and painters to bankers. The mission of these workers and the AFL-CIO "is to improve the lives of working families—to bring economic justice to the workplace and social justice to our nation. To accomplish this mission we will build and change the American labor movement."The AFL-CIO also has many goals which coincide with their mission:
"We will build a broad movement of American workers by organizing workers into unions. We will build a strong political voice for workers in our nation. We will change our unions to provide a new voice to workers in a changing economy. We will change our labor movement by creating a new voice for workers in our communities."
The association was willing to go to any extent to help out their employers which is why the membership was so high. Members started to slowly disappear after 25 successful years of a steady membership. Starting out with 16 million members in 1955 and dropping down to 13 million by 1984 is a significant loss. This loss of members is in large part due to the 1957 removal of the Teamsters' Union who were long time members of the AFL. The Teamsters' were involved in organized crime and manipulating employers with strong force. The Teamsters' philosophy was to
"Let each member do his duty as he sees fit. Let each put his shoulder to the wheel and work together to bring about better results. Let no member sow seeds of discord within our ranks, and let our enemies see that the Teamsters of this country are determined to get their just rewards and to make their organization as it should be -- one of the largest and strongest trade unions in the country now and beyond."
This philosophy did not work well for Teamster presidents Beck, Hoffa, and Williams who were all accused of criminal acts and sent to prison. In 1987 the AFL-CIO membership grew to 14 million members when the Teamsters Union was restored to the association.
The AFL-CIO also lost many members due to financial struggles in the United States. During the late 1900's the U.S. dollar began to oscillate due to rivalry with foreign countries and their coinage. This affects global trafficking and results in job loss for American citizens. The issues between the United States and foreign countries cannot be resolved by Eisenhower's third principle, which entailed honest negotiations. Consequently, the association has been dynamically supportive in administration policies which deal with global trafficking, the production of goods, and many other issues, which are optimistic policies that will add to an established financial system.
The AFL-CIO is now governed by a gathering of delegates who are present on behalf of association members who meet every four years. The delegates who are the spokespeople of the federation members are chosen by union members. While the delegates vote for new representatives every four years, they also lay down the goals and policies for the union. The most recent representatives for the organization along with 45 vice presidents are President John J. Sweeny, Secretary-treasurer Richard Trumka, and executive vice president Arlene Holt Baker
In the United States there are a total of 15.4 million union members, "11 million of whom belong to unions affiliated with the AFL-CIO." This number has grown rapidly since the beginning of the union movement because today, all individuals with different occupations are welcomed to join unions. "Today's unions include manufacturing and construction workers, teachers, technicians and doctors—and every type of worker in between. No matter what you do for a living, there's a union that has members who do the same thing."Educating union members about issues that shape lives of functioning families on a daily basis is one of the AFL-CIO's policies. They give them confidence to have their voices heard for political purposes. They also prioritize in
"creating family-supporting jobs by investing tax dollars in schools, roads, bridges and airports; improving the lives of workers through education, job training and raising the minimum wage; keeping good jobs at home by reforming trade rules, reindustrializing the U.S. economy and redoubling efforts at worker protections in the global economy; strengthening Social Security and private pensions; making high-quality, affordable health care available to everyone; and holding corporations more accountable for their actions."
The AFL-CIO is very supportive of political issues and they show their concern by giving out information about existing political issues to families. This information is spread by volunteers and activists and includes where all the candidates stand on the issues.
Before the 1990s, unions in Mexico have been historically part of a state institutional system. In the 1940-1980 period, between the end of the Mexican revolution in 1940, till the 1980s worldwide spread of neo-liberalism through the Washington Consensus, the Mexican unions have not operated independently, but have been instead part of a state institutional system, largely controlled by the ruling party.
During this 40 years, the primary aim of the labor unions was not to benefit the workers, but to carry out the state economic policy, under their cozy relationship with the ruling party. This economic policy, which peaked in the 1950-60s with the so called Mexican Miracle, saw rising incomes and rising standards of living, but only a minor part went to the workers, while the primary beneficiaries had been the wealthy.
When in the 1980s Mexico began to follow Washington Consensus, and sell of state industries (railroad, telecommunication) to private industries, the new owners had an antagonist attitude towards unions, and the unions, used to the cozy relationship with the state, was not prepared to fight back. A movement of new unions began to emerge, with a more independent model, while the old institutionalized unions had become very corrupt, violent and gangsterized. From the 1990s the new model of independent unions prevailed, and a number of them were represented by the National Union of Workers.
A 1919 strike leader addressing a crowd in Gary, Indiana.
Supporters of Unions, such as the ACTU or Australian Labor Party, often credit trade unions with leading thelabor movement in the early 20th century, which generally sought to end child labor practices, improve worker safety, increase wages for both union workers and non union workers, raise the entire society's standard of living, reduce the hours in a work week, provide public education for children, and bring other benefits to working class families.
 Structure and politics
Union structures, politics, and legal status vary greatly from country to country. For specific country details see List of trade unions.
Unions may organize a particular section of skilled workers (craft unionism), a cross-section of workers from various trades (general unionism), or attempt to organize all workers within a particular industry (industrial unionism). These unions are often divided into "locals", and united in national federations. These federations themselves will affiliate with Internationals, such as the International Trade Union Confederation.
A union may acquire the status of a "juristic person" (an artificial legal entity), with a mandate to negotiate with employers for the workers it represents. In such cases, unions have certain legal rights, most importantly the right to engage in collective bargaining with the employer (or employers) over wages, working hours, and other terms and conditions of employment. The inability of the parties to reach an agreement may lead to industrial action, culminating in either strike action or management lockout, or binding arbitration. In extreme cases, violent or illegal activities may develop around these events.
In other circumstances, unions may not have the legal right to represent workers, or the right may be in question. This lack of status can range from non-recognition of a union to political or criminal prosecution of union activists and members, with many cases of violence and deaths having been recorded both historically and contemporarily.
Unions may also engage in broader political or social struggle. Social Unionism encompasses many unions that use their organizational strength to advocate for social policies and legislation favorable to their members or to workers in general. As well, unions in some countries are closely aligned with political parties.
Unions are also delineated by the service model and the organizing model. The service model union focuses more on maintaining worker rights, providing services, and resolving disputes. Alternately, the organizing model typically involves full-time union organizers, who work by building up confidence, strong networks, and leaders within the workforce; and confrontational campaigns involving large numbers of union members. Many unions are a blend of these two philosophies, and the definitions of the models themselves are still debated.
Although their political structure and autonomy varies widely, union leaderships are usually formed through democratic elections.
Some research, such as that conducted by the ACIRRT, argues that unionized workers enjoy better conditions and wages than those who are not unionized.
In Britain, the perceived left-leaning nature of trade unions has resulted in the formation of a reactionary right-wing trade union called Solidarity which is supported by the far-right BNP.
 Shop types
Companies that employ workers with a union generally operate on one of several models:
- A union shop (US) or a "post-entry closed shop" (UK) employs non-union workers as well, but sets a time limit within which new employees must join a union.
- An agency shop requires non-union workers to pay a fee to the union for its services in negotiating their contract. This is sometimes called the Rand formula. In certain situations involving state public employees in the United States, such as California, "fair share laws" make it easy to require these sorts of payments.
 Diversity of international unions
Labor law varies from country to country, as does the function of unions. For example, in Germany only open shops are legal; that is, all discrimination based on union membership is forbidden. This affects the function and services of the union. In addition, German unions have played a greater role in management decisions through participation in corporate boards and co-determination than have unions in the United States. (newsletter/files/BTS012EN_12-15.pdf).
In Britain, a series of laws introduced during the 1980s by Margaret Thatcher's government restricted closed and union shops. All agreements requiring a worker to join a union are now illegal. In the United States, theTaft-Hartley Act of 1947 outlawed the closed shop, but permitted the union shop unless the state government chose to prohibit it.
In addition, unions' relations with political parties vary. In many countries unions are tightly bonded, or even share leadership, with a political party intended to represent the interests of working people. Typically this is a left-wing, socialist, or social democratic party, but many exceptions exist. In the United States, by contrast, although it is historically aligned with the Democratic Party, the labor movement is by no means monolithic on that point; this is especially true among the individual "rank and file" members. For example, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters has supported Republican Party candidates on a number of occasions and the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO) endorsed Ronald Reagan in 1980. (However, when PATCO went on strike in violation of their "no strike" contract, President Reagan ordered them back to work. Those who didn't return to the job were fired and replaced, effectively destroying PATCO.) In Britain the labor movement's relationship with the Labour Party is fraying as party leadership embarks on privatization plans at odds with what unions see as the worker's interests. On top of this in the past there as been a group known as the Conservative Trade Unionists or CTU. A group formed of people who sympathized with right wing Tory policy but were Trade Unionists.
In Western Europe, professional associations often carry out the functions of a trade union. In these cases, they may be negotiating for white-collar workers, such as physicians, engineers, or teachers. Typically such trade unions refrain from politics or pursue a more ordoliberal politics than their blue-collarcounterparts.
In Germany the relation between individual employees and employers is considered to be asymmetrical. In consequence, many working conditions are not negotiable due to a strong legal protection of individuals. However, the German flavor or works legislation has as its main objective to create a balance of power between employees organized in unions and employers organized in employers associations. This allows much wider legal boundaries for collective bargaining, compared to the narrow boundaries for individual negotiations. As a condition to obtain the legal status of a trade union, employee associations need to prove that their leverage is strong enough to serve as a counterforce in negotiations with employers. If such an employees association is competing against another union, its leverage may be questioned by unions and then evaluated in a court trial. In Germany only very few professional associations obtained the right to negotiate salaries and working conditions for their members, notably the medical doctors association Marburger Bund and the pilots association Vereinigung Cockpit. The engineers association Verein Deutscher Ingenieure does not strive to act as a union, as it also represents the interests of engineering businesses.
Finally, the structure of employment laws affects unions' roles and how they carry out their business. In many western European countries wages and benefits are largely set by governmental action. The United States takes a more laissez-faire approach, setting some minimum standards but leaving most workers' wages and benefits to collective bargaining and market forces. Historically, the Republic of Korea has regulated collective bargaining by requiring employers to participate but collective bargaining has been legal only if held in sessions before the lunar new year. In totalitarian regimes such as Nazi Germany, Trade Unions were outlawed. In the Soviet Union and China, unions have typically been de facto government agencies devoted to smooth and efficient operation of government enterprises.
Main article: Opposition to trade unions
Trade unions have been accused of benefiting insider workers, those having secure jobs, at the cost of outsider workers, consumers of the goods or services produced, and the shareholders of the unionized business. Those who are likely to be disadvantaged most from unionization are the unemployed, those at risk of unemployment, or workers who are unable to get the job they want in a particular line of work.
In the United States, the outsourcing of labor to Asia, Latin America, and Africa has been partially driven by increasing costs of union partnership, which gives other countries a comparative advantage in labor, making it more efficient to perform labor-intensive work there. Milton Friedman, Nobel economist an advocate oflaissez-faire capitalism sought to show that unionization produces higher wages (for the union members) at the expense of fewer jobs, and that, if some industries are unionized while others are not, wages will tend to decline in non-unionized industries.
Trade unions have been said to have ineffective policies on racism and sexism, such that a union is justified in not supporting a member taking action against another member. This was demonstrated by the 1987 judgment in the Weaver v NATFEH case in the UK — in which a black Muslim woman brought a complaint of workplace racist harassment against a co-trade unionist. The finding was that in the event of the union offering assistance to the plaintiff it would be in violation of the union's duty to protect the tenure of the accused member and the judgment still sets the precedent for cases of this kind that union members who make complaints to the employer of racist or sexist harassment against member(s) of the same union cannot obtain union advice or assistance; this applies irrespective of the merit of the complaint.
Unions are sometimes accused of holding society to ransom by taking strike actions that result in the disruption of public services.
 Worldwide Union and by Region and Country
 Worldwide and International Cooperation
The largest organization in the world is the Brussels-based International Trade Union Confederation, which today has approximately 309 affiliated organizations in 156 countries and territories, with a combined membership of 166 million. Other global trade union organizations include the World Federation of Trade Unions.
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Ambedkar and Communism
Reply to Marxist Look at Religion Buddhist Approach
by Dr. K. Jamanadas,
This has a reference to an article by Research Scholars, Kong Fan and Li Shen, published in "Studies in World Religions" #4, 1983, by Kong Fan and Li Shen tr. by P. Barry.
The issues created by the authors are not new. They have been raised time and again and not only in Indian context, but in World context they have been already answered by authorities like Dr. Ambedkar.
The authors expound two theories, that views of Marx, Lenin and Mao are opposed to religion. They feel that only Marx has given scientific explanation of religion, and that it is "Religion is the Opium of the people". Authors say that "It can not lead people who suffer difficulties to overcome the difficulties. It only allows them to anesthetize themselves, thereby, Religion changes material struggle into a kind of spiritual comfort. It transforms real needs to hopes of an illusory world." The authors apparently equate religion with God, and feel that as Science has disproved the existence of God, and as so called religious ethics comes from the will of God, it has no meaning.
Secondly, they believe only Marxism holds that, ultimately, rooting out private ownership will remove all evil. They lament that though Socialism has brought liberation of masses, still people believe in religion. This is because of legacy of feudalism, influence of capitalism, imperialism, beurocratism.
Lastly they outline the line of action not only for their own country but for the whole world. They feel the Communist party of China thinks it necessary to form a united front with "patriotic religious believers to oppose the reactionary forces at home and abroad and to carry out socialist revolution and modernization". They are bound to expound Marxism through "research into religion and into its history, doctrine and present circumstances." This propaganda they wish to do with "unhurried discussion to reason things out" by criticizing religion but not the people who follow or preach it, except the "criminals". Of course they do not forget to assign the power of final judgment to a few persons as they say that all this must be according to the "theories, plans and policies of Party Central".
They, however, admit that there were "religious wrongs", but blame the "Gang of four" with their "ultra leftist" attitude for these religious wrongs. Further claiming that State is not controlling Religion, the Authors are generous in allowing practice of religion to those who are patriotic and not against the government.
As I have been asked to reply this article by Mr. Jaysuria, a Buddhist Dignitary from America, I will try to say a few words from Indian Buddhist's point of view.
Ambedkar and Communism
There is such a vast literature by Dr. Ambedkar in favour of Buddhism and against Communism, that only quoting from Ambedkar, who has already thought over Communism for years before giving Buddhism to the multitudes of Indian masses, will answer all points raised by the above research scholars. One thing needs to be remembered is that Ambedkar's views are nearly fifty years old, and they are still valid. They do not mention Mao, as his theories had not then come into prominence, but what he says about communism in general should also apply to Maoism too.
The very fact that "The Gang of Four" can become successful in capturing power and do the things, against the "real" Marxism, proves the fact that there is some inherent weaknesses in Marxism.
One thing, I wish to make clear is I am not a Communist, I am an Ambedkarite. But I am one of those few who think that Marxism is not finished in Russia, unlike many who do, after the break up of Soviet Union. The meaning of Religion according to Buddhism, as expounded by Dr. Ambedkar, the modern Religion Giver of Indian Buddhism, is well explained in his "Buddha and His Dhamma", the Bible of Buddhist Ambedkarites.
It is rather unfortunate, that we have to say, the authors of the article either misunderstood Marxism or Religion or both. These scholars should have pondered over one point. If any people in the world, needed the liberation from oppression, they were the Dalits of India. According to theories of Marxism, the revolution should have started here by them. But their leader Dr. Ambedkar thought that Communism is no answer, and adopted Buddhism along with his followers. His followers are now about one fifth population of this country of 1000 million people. Was Dr. Ambedkar wrong in discarding Communism and accepting Buddhism?
Pre-requisites of Communism
Dr. Ambedkar avers that there are certain pre-requisites for the Marxism to succeed. These are the society should be a "Free society", meaning it should give importance to an Individual over the society and that it should be based on equality, fraternity and liberty. [Ambedkar, "India and the Pre-requisites of Communism", (W&S vol. 3,), p.95]
These have been brought to China by Buddhism and to Russia by Christianity. The absence of these factors in caste ridden Indian society could not foster the growth of Marxism in India, and that is why Marx failed in Hindu India. Marx could not properly evaluate the importance of caste or its influence on Indian masses. Because, Marx failed here, his followers in India talk of "Class" and not of "Caste". That is the reason, the movement of Marx in India was and still is in the hands of oppressor class.
Residue of Marxism
Marx expounded his theories about 150 years ago. Most of Marxism is demolished during these years. But what remains of the Karl Marx, Dr. Ambedkar feels, is a residue of fire, small but still very important. The residue in his opinion, consists of four items:
(i) The function of philosophy is to reconstruct the world and not to waste its time in explaining the origin of the world.
(ii) That there is a conflict of interest between class and class.
(iii) That private ownership of property brings power to one class and sorrow to another through exploitation.
(iv) That it is necessary for the good of society that the sorrow be removed by the abolition of private property.
Comparison between Buddha and Karl Marx
Taking the points form the Marxian Creed which have survived Dr. Ambedkar compares the Buddha and Karl Marx. He feels that, on the first point there is complete agreement between the Buddha and Karl Marx. That language is different but the meaning is the same. If for misery one reads exploitation Buddha is not away form Marx. ("Buddha or Karl Marx", (W&S vol. 3), p. 444)
On the question of private property, Dr. Ambedkar quotes the illuminating extract from a dialogue between Buddha and Ananda, Buddha saying avarice is because of possession, which in turn is because of tenacity. Not only Buddha prohibited private property in Sangha, he put more restrictions and "rules are far more rigorous than are to be found in Communism in Russia" (Ibid. p. 446)
Means to achieve goals
Dr. Ambedkar, then, examines the means to achieve the goals. Having summarized Buddha's tenets, he feels that, it is clear that the means adopted by the Buddha were to convert a man by changing his moral disposition to follow the path voluntarily. The means adopted by the Communists are equally clear, short and swift. They are (1) Violence and (2) Dictatorship of the Proletariat.
The Communists say that there are the only two means of establishing Communism. The first is violence. Nothing short of it will suffice to break up the existing system. The other is Dictatorship of the Proletariat. Nothing short of it will suffice to continue the new system. It is now clear what are the similarities and differences between Buddha and Karl Marx. The differences are about the means. The end is common to both. (Ibid. p. 450)
The Bhikshu Sangha had the most democratic constitution. The Buddha was only one of the Bhikkus. At the most he was like a Prime Minister among members of the Cabinet. He was never a dictator. Twice before his death be was asked to appoint some one as the head of the Sangha to control it. But each time he refused saying that the Dhamma is the Supreme Commander of the Sangha. He refused to be a dictator and refused to appoint a dictator.
What about the value of the means? Whose means are superior and lasting in the long run?
Can the Communists say that in achieving their valuable they have not destroyed other valuable ends? They have destroyed private property. Assuming that this is a valuable end can the Communists say that they have not destroyed other valuable end in the process of achieving it? How many people have they killed for achieving their end. Has human life no value? Could they not have taken property without taking the life of the owner? (Ibid. p. 452)
Dictatorship is often defined as absence of liberty or absence of Parliamentary Government. Both interpretations are not quite clear. There is no liberty even when there is Parliamentary Government. For law means want of liberty. The difference between Dictatorship and Parliamentary Government lies in this. In Parliamentary Government every citizen has a right to criticize the restraint on liberty imposed by the Government. In Parliamentary Government you have a duty and a right; the duty to obey the law and right to criticize it. In Dictatorship you have only duty to obey but no right to criticize it. [Ibid. p. 453]
We must now consider whose means are more lasting. One has to chose between Government by force and Government by moral disposition. As Burke has said force cannot be a lasting means. In his speech on conciliation with America he uttered this memorable warning:
"First, Sir, permit me to observe, that the use of force alone is but temporary. It may subdue for a moment: But it does not remove the necessity of subduing again; and a nation is not governed which is perpetually to be conquered."
"My next objection is its uncertainty. Terror is not always the effect of force, and an armament is not a victory. If you do not succeed, you are without resource, for, conciliation failing, force remains; but force failing. no further hope of reconciliation is left. Power and authority are sometimes bought by kindness; but they can never be begged as alms by an impoverished and defeated violence.
A further objection to force is, that you impair the object by your very endeavors to preserve it. The thing you fought for is the thing which you recover, but depreciated, sunk, wasted and consumed in the contest." (Ibid. p. 453)
Withering away of State
Dr. Ambedkar also discusses the Communist theory of "withering away of the state". He says, The Communists themselves admit that their theory of the State as a permanent dictatorship is a weakness in their political philosophy. They take shelter under the plea that the State will ultimately wither away. There are two questions which they have to answer. (1) When will it wither away? (2) What will take the place of the State when it withers away? To the first question they can give no definite time. (Ibid. p 459)
Though the second question is more important than the first, Dr. Ambedkar feels, the Communists have no satisfactory answer to the question what would take the place of the State when it withers away. Will it be succeed by Anarchy? If so, he feels, the building up of the Communist State is an useless effort. If it cannot be sustained except by force and if it results in anarchy when the force holding it together is withdrawn what good is the Communist State. [Ibid. p.460]
He therefore avers that, the only thing which could sustain it after force is withdrawn is Religion. He observes:
"But to the Communists, Religion is anathema. Their hatred to Religion is so deep seated that they will not even discriminate between religions which are helpful to Communism and religions which are not. The Communists have carried their hatred of Christianity to Buddhism without waiting to examine the difference between the two." [Ibid. p. 460]
Charges against Christianity
Dr. Ambedkar discusses two charges against Christianity leveled by the Communists. Surprisingly, the same charges are leveled by Chinese Research Scholars in the same terminology. Ambedkar answers these charges as he observes:
"Their first charge against Christianity was that they made people other worldliness and made them suffer poverty in this world. As can be seen from quotations from Buddhism in the earlier part of this tract such a charge cannot be leveled against Buddhism."
Dr. Ambedkar then answers the second charge as follows:
"The second charge leveled by the Communists against Christianity cannot be leveled against Buddhism. This charge is summed up in the statement that Religion is the opium of the people. This charge is based upon the Sermon on the Mount which is to be found in the Bible. The Sermon on the Mount sublimates poverty and weakness. It promises heaven to the poor and the weak. There is no Sermon on the Mount to be found in the Buddha's teachings. His teaching is to acquire wealth." [Ibid. p.460]
He then gives the Buddha's Sermon on the subject to Anathapindika one of his disciples, wherein Buddha describes how wealth should be acquired justly and legitimately. [Ibid. p. 460]
Dr. Ambedkar concludes the discussion by observing:
"The Russians do not seem to be paying any attention to Buddhism as an ultimate aid to sustain Communism when force is withdrawn.
"The Russians are proud of their communism. But they forget that the wonder of all wonders is that the Buddha established Communism so far as the Sangha was concerned without dictatorship. It may be that it was a communism on a very small scale but it was communism without dictatorship, a miracle which Lenin failed to do.
"The Buddha's method was different. His method was to change the mind of man: to alter his disposition: so that whatever man does, he does it voluntarily without the use of force or compulsion. His main means to alter the disposition of men was his Dhamma and the constant preaching of his Dhamma. The Buddha's way not to force people to do what they did not like to do although it was good for them. His way was to alter the disposition of men so that they would do voluntarily what they would not otherwise to do.
"It has been claimed that the Communist Dictatorship in Russia has wonderful achievements to its credit. There can be no denial of it. That is why I say that a Russian Dictatorship would be good for all backward countries. But this his no argument for permanent Dictatorships. Humanity does not only want economic values, it also wants spiritual values to be retained. Permanent Dictatorship has paid no attention to spiritual values and does not seem to intend to. Carlyle called Political Economy a Pig Philosophy. Carlyle was of course wrong. For man needs material comforts. But the Communist Philosophy seems to be equally wrong for the aim of their philosophy seems to be fatten pigs as though men are no better than pigs. Man must grow materially as well as spiritually. Society has been aiming to lay a new foundation was summarized by the French Revolution in three words. Fraternity, Liberty and Equality. The French Revolution was welcomed because of this slogan. It failed to produce equality. We welcome the Russian Revolution because it aims to produce equality. But it cannot be too much emphasized that in producing equality society cannot afford to sacrifice fraternity or liberty. Equality will be of no value without fraternity or liberty. It seems that the three can coexist only if one follows the way of the Buddha. Communism can give one but not all. [Ibid. p. 462]
Tests of Religion
In his memorable treatise, "Buddha and future of His Religion", after comparing Buddhism with Hinduism, while comparing Buddhism with other non-hindu religions, Dr. Ambedkar concludes by enumerating the tests a religion must pass:
"(i) That society must have either the sanction of law or the sanction of morality to hold it together. Without either society is sure to go pieces. In all societies law plays a very small part. It is intended to keep the minority within the range of social discipline. The majority is left and has to be left to sustain its social life by the postulates and sanction of morality. Religion in the sense of morality, must therefore, remain the governing principle in every society.
(ii) That religion as defined in the first proposition must be in accord with science. Religion is bound to lose it respect and therefore become the subject of ridicule and thereby not merely lose its force as a governing principle of life but might in course of time disintegrated and lapse if it is not in accord with science. In other words, religion if it is to function, must be in accord with reason which is merely another name for science.
(iii) That religion as a code of social morality, must recognize the fundamental tenets of liberty, equality and fraternity. Unless a religion recognizes these three fundamental principles of social life religion will be doomed.
(iv) That religion must not sanctify or ennoble poverty. Renunciation of riches by those who have it may be a blessed state. But poverty can never be. To declare poverty to be a blessed state is to pervert religion, to perpetuate vice crime, to consent to make earth a living hell."
Dr. Ambedkar asks, which religion fulfills these requirements today, reminding that the days of the Mahatmas are gone and the world cannot have a new Religion. It will have to make its choice from existing religions. Some of the religions might satisfy one or two tests but Buddhism is the only religion satisfying all tests. He observes:
"So far as I know the only religion which satisfies all these tests is Buddhism. In other words Buddhism is the only religion which the world can have. If the new world - which be it realized is very different from the old - must have a religion - and the new world needs religion for more than the old world did - then it can only be religion of the Buddha." [Buddha and future of his religion", p. 9]
"Could the Buddha answer Karl Marx?"
Admitting that all this may sound very strange, because most of writers on Buddha have propagated the idea that the only thing Buddha taught was Ahimsa. It is true Buddha taught Ahimsa, he says, he does not want to minimize its importance, because it is a great doctrine and the world can not be saved without it. He further observes:
"What I wish to emphasize it is that Buddha taught many other things besides Ahimsa. He taught as a part of religion, social freedom, intellectual freedom, economic freedom and political freedom. He taught equality, equality not between man and man only but between man and woman. It would be difficult to find a religious teacher to compare with Buddha whose teachings embrace so many aspects of the social life of a people whose doctrines are so modern and whose main concern was to give salvation to man in his life on earth and not to promise it to him in heaven after he is dead." [Buddha and future of his religion", p. 10]
Dr. Ambedkar says many divergent views expressed about Buddha's teachings, including Samadhi, Vippasana, Esoterism etc. are because the authors are not students of Buddhism, but of history or anthropology. He asks "Did the Buddha have no social message?" If pressed for an answer, the Buddhist scholars admit that Buddha taught 1. Ahimsa and 2. Peace. But the real questions are seldom asked and replied. These are: Did the Buddha teach 1. Justice, 2. Love, 3. Liberty, 4. Equality, 5. Fraternity, and 6. "Could the Buddha answer Karl Marx?" He further avers that "My answer is that the Buddha has a social message. He answers all these questions. But they have been buried by modern authors." ["Buddha and His Dhamma", book III, part II, sec. 1. (p. 159)]
The Proof of Buddhism superseding Marxism
It is well known that His Holiness Pope John Paul II, does not have much love about Buddhism. Also John L. Allen Jr., recently reported in National Catholic Reporter, of Feb. 26, 1999, that the Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, in 1997,
"had riled Buddhists when he called the religion an "autocratic spirituality" that seeks "transcendence without imposing concrete religious obligation." He also suggested that Buddhism would replace Marxism as the church's biggest foe by 2000."
If Buddhism is being replacing Marxism, by authorities like above, as per Laws of Contradictions by Mao himself, it shows a great future for Buddhism in World affairs. And Ambedkar's prophecy will come true sooner than later.
Bahujan Parties veiled communal-Casteist face of Congress and Certified it Secular !
In fact aware section of common masses have been realizing that Communal-Casteist Congress was never secular and is inseparable part of Sangh-Parivar. It has becoming increasingly clear that :-
1) It was hypocrite Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi of communal-casteist Congress who did not want independence of India if OBC, Dalit, Muslim Adivasi are placed equal with the Arya-Brahmins. Therefore he sat on hunger strike until death to compel Dr. B. R. Ambedkar to withdraw the separate electorate granted for Dalits by then British prime minister. Through Poona Pact he compelled Dalits to surrender separate electorate which was invaluable political weapon of Dalits that not only ensured their every protection but would have made the indigenous Bahujans ruler of their country through the following process :- 1) Because in separate electorate voters were only Dalits hence they would have elected staunch revolutionary Dalits. Though the separate electorates were few in number their voice could not have been denied as it being the voice of whole Dalits. 2) In addition to voting right in separate electorate, the Dalits also had right to vote in joint electorate. With this vote they would have elected those Non Arya-Brahmin candidates who are committed to Bahujan interest. This would have soon ousted the Arya-Brahmin rule from India.
After Poona pact, communal-casteist Congress with Arya-Brahmin votes elected their Dalit stooges who for their selfish interests helped Arya-Brahmins to exploit OBC, Dalit, Muslim, Adivasi indigenous masses in every respect. That is why communal-casteist Congress and its stooges are glorifying "Poona Pact' day as Dalit rights day which is nothing other that "stooge-rights day".
2) Under the leadership of Communal-casteist Congress handed over areas dominated by Dalits, Chakma and other militant communities where Muslims were in minority. These areas were Jassor, Khulana, Barishal, Faridpur, Dhaka and Maimansingh province. They were handed over to Pakistan to establish Arya-Brahmin political hegemony in west Bengal and punish Bengali Dalits who had elected Dr. B. R. Ambedkar on constituent assembly when communal-casteist Congress had sworn to keep him out of constituent assembly. In Chittagong hills 98% of Chakma believed in Buddhism through the ages. This was the only region devoid of Hindu or Muslim population. In spite of that the whole region was handed over to Pakistan by Arya-Brahminist rulers to see that Arya-Brahmin rule remain intact in West Bengal. Arya-Brahmins are still avenging Bengali refugees in worst possible satanic ways. For complete details please log on to our blog at http://sheetalmarkam.wordpress.com and please read "Arya-Brahmin Vengeance on Bengali-Tamil Dalits & Chakma Adivasi Indigenous Refugees" in " Arya-Brahmin vengeance" category of the blog.
3) It was communal-casteist Congress which to protect Arya-Brahmin rule partitioned motherland into India and Pakistan and unleashed communal carnage on indigenous masses to keep them divided in communal frenzy. This ensured that indigenous Muslims and non-Muslims who originally belong to Nag-Dravid community keep on killing each other, shall always remain deprived and will never unite to oust their common Arya-Brahmin enemy.
4) Dr. Ambedkar wanted to make provision of reservation for backward Muslims through Indian constitution. He tried to persuade Maulana Abul Kalam Azad in this regard. But Mr. Azad who was an upper caste Muslim leader of communal-casteist Congress accused Dr. Ambedkar that he was trying to divide Muslims and refused the offered reservation for backward Muslims.
5) Jawaharlal Nehru and his company wanted to create disturbances in Islam. They were successful in keeping provision of common civil code in article 45 which was brought to meet their intention of creating disturbances in Islam. No upper caste Muslim leaders opposed the provision.
6) It was Nehru the leader of Communal casteist Congress who had issued instructions that Muslims should not be appointed in military and other services. (Dalit Voice, 1-15 May2001) George Fernandez had revealed that Mrs. Gandhi the leader of communal-casteist Congress before the 1971 war in Bangla Desh had issued an order to chief ministers of Indian states that No Muslims be appointed in Army and on important posts. (Nav Bharat, 30 September 2003) Then home minister of Congress Mr. Govind Vallabh Pant had issued an order that Muslims should not be appointed in Army or their appointment should be kept minimum. The order issued by him is still effective because no government until now made it null and void. (Nav Bharat, 13 April 2006)
7) In year 1935 Arya-Brahmins were 3% in bureaucracy. The communal-casteist policies of Nehru and its communal-casteist Congress raised Arya-Brahmin strength in services from 3% to 70%. till 1989.(V.T. Rajshekar, Dialogue of the Bhudevtas)
It was communal-casteist congress which enforced in Indian constitution the provision of banning cow-slaughter through article 48 forgetting that cow-flesh is cheap and is eaten as food my Christians, Muslims as well as by Hindu castes. The number of cow-eaters is more among non-Muslims than the Muslims. Upper caste Muslims and upper caste Christians did not oppose the article.
9) It is communal-casteist Congress which has kept OBC away from their legitimate reservation. Communal-casteist Congress refused to appoint commission to determine OBC reservation. When Dr. Ambedkar resigned from government in protest of this and threatened to launch agitation, communal casteist Congress appointed Kaka Kalelkar Commission and did not implement its recommendations to give 52% reservations to OBC. Kaka Kalelkar himself a Brahmin and leader of communal-casteist Congress wrote in his personal letter to Nehru not to implement the recommendations of his commission. After decades Mandal commission was organized to decide OBC reservation. Again it was communal-casteist Congress which did not implement OBC reservation recommended by Mandal Commission.
10) It was communal-casteist Congress who to sidetrack the issue of implementation of Mandal commission recommendations to OBC engineered operation blue star and demolished golden temple of Sikhs in Amritsar. The whole country was kept charged with the communal frenzy in which OBC issue was completely sidetracked.
11) Communal-casteist Congress to sidetrack the issue of OBC reservation sent so called peace keeping force in Shri Lanka.
12) Communal casteist Congress to sidetrack the issue of OBC reservation had laid the foundation of demolition of Babri Mosque. Then deputy commissioner of Faizabad Mr. K. K. Nair issued an administrative proposal on 10th October 1949 to general administration that a Ram temple be build in Ayodhya. Few months after that stealthily a idol of Rama was installed in Babri Mosque and the very next day the mosque was locked and Muslims were prohibited from performing Namaz in Babri mosque. (In 1983 Indira Gandhi had took out Hindu Ekatmta Yatra.) In the regime of communal-casteist Congress Mr. Arun Nehru minister of communal-casteist Congress opened gates of Babari mosque for Hindus to offer prayers to Ram idol (installed earlier) implementing the order of a Brahmin judge Mr. Pande. While the Hindus were allowed prayers in mosque, Muslims were prevented from performing Namaz. Prime minister Rajeev Gandhi of communal-casteist Congress Performed Shilanyas in 1989 and had announced RamRajya. Communal casteist Congress let the Babri Mosque to be demolished. Mr. P. V. Narsingha Rao of communal-casteist Congress on TV happily watched Babri Mosque being demolished. The whole country was again thrown into communal carnages. Congress leaders actively helped in these carnages and genocides with the parties openly declared as communalists.
13) It was communal-casteist Congress which had created state sponsored genocides of Sikhs all over India and Delhi.
14) It is communal-casteist Congress which did not do anything to punish the culprits of Sikh carnages.
15) According to the Hitwada (6 November 2004) Arya-Brahminists of communal-casteist Congress riding Indian government gave 1.5 million dollar amount to then Punjab governor Mr. Surendra Nath so that in Punjab (in the name of Khalistani militants) and in Kashmir (in the name of Muslim terrorists) such terrorist activities should be executed which will make them unpopular and people will hate them. terrorist CAT force was formed which accomplished this task. It is alleged that Arya-Brahmins riding Indian government killed 115000 (One Lac fifteen thousand) Sikhs in Punjab since 1984, since 1947 killed 150000 Christians in Nagaland and since 1988 killed 43000 Muslims in Kashmir.
16) It is under the rule of communal-casteist Congress that Arya-Brahmins ensured that no killer of Dalits and Muslims be punished. Communal-casteist Congress never implemented decisions of Commissions such as Shrikrishna Commission to punish culprits of communal riots.
17) Forget about, common masses even the communal-casteist Congress did nothing to save family of its own member of parliament in genocide of Muslims in Gujarat. The sister of late Ahsan Jafari the member of parliament accused that when rioters were attacking their house, her brother on phone requested every leader and officer including Mrs. Sonia Gandhi to protect them from the rioters but no action was taken. (Nav Bharat, 15 December 2002) It is accused that workers and leaders of the communal-casteist Congress actively participated in the genocide of Muslims in Gujarat.
Congress has engineered genocides of Muslim all over India having mutual understanding with fascist Sangh-Parivar organizations. An Ex-chief minister of communal-casteist Congress has admitted in his autobiography that communal riot in Bhagalpur was engineered by then chief minister. But communal-casteist Congress took no action in this regard. (Lokmat Samachar, 3 August 2005) it was communal casteist Congress who advised president Abdul Kalam that using his special privileges he should not deliver to Nanawati Commission investigating Gujarat riots the copies of letters that then president of India K. R. Narayanan (Dalit) had written to then prime minister Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpeyi to take immediate measures to stop Gujarat riots. (Samrat, 25 September 2005)
18) It was Narsingha Rao, the prime minister of communal-casteist Congress government, in order to make reservation meaningless had started privatization of government units because in private industries there is no reservation. Thousands of reserved jobs were thus instantly abolished and Arya-Brahmin boys and girls occupied these jobs in privatized units. Communal-casteist Congress had intensified the policy of liberalization, globalization and privatization in the interest of Arya-Brahmins while making the life of Bahujans hellish.
19) It is communal-casteist Congress which is implementing policy of "Special Economic Zones" and uprooting millions of OBC, Dalit, Muslim, Adivasi Bahujans from their ancestral homes and making their life hellish. This is being done to ensure high posts for their Arya-Brahmin boys and girls in these SEZs which are given status analogous to "foreign territory' where they have every facility to loot the country and the workers without fear.
20) It is communal-casteist Congress which in collaboration with communal-fascist BJP is performing genocides and rapes of Adivasi through "Salva Judum" campaign of state sponsored private armed forces. Salva Judum is being launched with intention to extinct Adivasi from their ancestral land so that their land can be occupied by Multinational companies for mining precious minerals.
21) It was communal-casteist Congress which while its rule in Orissa, had ensured jobs for their Arya-Brahmin women by implementing women's reservation in Orissa without providing quota for OBC, Dalit, Muslim and Adivasi women in women's reservations. Communal-casteist Congress very well knew that because OBC, Dalit, Muslim and Adivasi women's quota is not decided hence they shall be at liberty to select their Arya-Brahmin women on jobs blaming OBC, Dalit, Muslim and Adivasi women "not suitable".
22) It is communal-casteist Congress in unison with fascist BJP and Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership are yearning to implement women's reservation bill in parliament without ensuring Quota of OBC, Dalit, Muslim and Adivasi women because they want to grab entire seats for their Arya-Brahmin women.
23) Adivasi land bill had made obligatory for Kerala government to ensure return of the Adivasi land to Adivasi which was grabbed by non-adivasi. It was communal-casteist Congress which along with its Brahmin fake communist leadership of CPM and CPI ensured that the bill shall never be implemented in Kerala. They shamelessly kept on amending the bill and prevented Adivasi land to be handed over to the Adivasi masses.
24) It was communal casteist Congress who executed genocide of Adivasi in Muthanga forest. These Adivasis had made settlement at Muthanga barren land and made it their haven were demanding Congress government to fulfill their agreement with Adivasi leader C. K. Janu and allot them the land as per written agreement between them. Communal casteist Congress in unison with Brahmin fake communist leadership of CPI and CPM have been evicting Adivasi from their land and selling the land to the land Mafia. (for complete details please read our Hindi awareness book "Brahmanwad Ki Giraft Me Dam Todata Samyavadi Inkelab by Sheetam Markam pp. 480, price Rs. 150/- send MO to Mrs. Sujata Wasnik, 14, Thaware Colony, Nagpur – 440014 (India)).
25) It is communal-casteist Congress which took no action against the fake communist government of West Bengal which was perpetrators of genocides of Bengali Dalit refugees settled in Morichjhapi of Sunderban. This genocide of Dalits was greater than the alleged genocides committed by Hitler.
26) It is communal-casteist Congress which had done everything to protect the fascist government of West Bengal lead by Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership which had executed state sponsored genocides, rapes and mutilation of genitals of OBC, Dalit, Muslim, Adivasi women in Nandigram.
27) It is the communal-casteist Congress which is compelling scavengers to carry human excreta on their head. Communal-casteist Congress, communal-fascist BJP and Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership do not want abolition of this inhuman system as they want Valmiki community to remain below animal level.
28) To further make Valmiki community dependent upon Arya-Brahmins the communal casteist Congress in unison with communal-fascist BJP and Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership privatized scavenging services. As a result Arya-Brahmin owned organizations such As Sulabh having contracts with state and local administrations construct Lavatories in public places and appoint scavengers at meager wages and earn fabulous profit. Communal-casteist Congress, communal-fascist BJP and Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership could have formed societies of Valmiki community and could have given them contracts to build lavatories etc and run the whole sanitary services. But how can these Arya-Brahmins do that because their only intention is to transform Valmiki community below the status of filthy animals.
29) In the foreground of Jaipur high court a statue of Manu was inaugurated on 28 June 1989 in the presence of then chief minister of fascist communal-casteist Congress. According to Manu Brahmins own everything that exists in world and every property of non-Brahmins belong and Brahmins even the Brahmins can can execute massacres of non-Brahmins.
Above mentioned example are few among the thousands. They make it crystal clear that communal-casteist congress, communal-fascist BJP and Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership are inseparable part of fascist Sangh-Parivar committed to reduce indigenous Bahujans below the level of filthy animals.
From the very begining a systematic, intensive propaganda is being carried out through OBC, Dalit, Muslim Adivasi stooge leaders, stooge Bahujan intellectuals and stooge journalists at national and international level to hide the Communal-Casteist and fascist face of Congress. Intensive attempts are being made to retain the illusion that Congress is secular party. Many Bahujan journalist have also under the influence of this illusion keep on asserting that Sonia Gandhi is secular and well-wisher of Bahujans while few elements in Congress such as Manmohan Singh are communal and anti-Bahujans. They have repeatedly made open appeals to Sonia Gandhi through their writings to check these anti-Bahujan Congressmen. This was made to create illusion that Sonia Gandhi is savior of Bahujans. This propaganda of so called Dalit-Bahujan journalists has helped to hide dirty fascist communal face of Communal-Casteist Congress.
Lalu Prasad Yadav, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Ramvilas Pasvan etc. have been allying with Communal-Casteist Congress and vehemently certified that Communal-Casteist Congress is secular and well-wisher of Bahujans. Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav, Ramvilas Pasvan have been repeatedly vouching to remain faithful soldiers of Sonia Gandhi the leader of communal-Casteist Congress. Even BSP did not lag behind in vouching Communal-Casteist Congress as secular party as it has been declaring its unconditional support to congress government at centre from outside. These supports created illusion that Communal-Casteist Congress is secular and well-wisher of Bahujans. Therefore unaware Bahujan section considered their worst enemy as their best friend and savior. This ensured that when Communal-Casteist Congress is in position to defeat fascist BJP the indigenous masses will vote Communal-Casteist Congress to prevent fascist BJP from coming to power.
Now when the communal-casteist Congress has captured the crown, BSP has again declared its unconditional support to Communal-Casteist Congress government from outside. This decision of BSP makes it clear that like other parties of OBC, Dalit, Muslim Adivasi BSP leaders also want to consider enemies of Bahujans as their friends because of their selfish interests. BSP founder Kanshiram used to call Communal-Casteist Congress and communal-fascist BJP as Snakes and Kobra. Kanshiram occasionally allied with them to benefit party and mission from their contradictions. While doing this he made it crystal-clear to his party workers and Dalit masses that these parties of Arya-Brahmin leadership are their worst enemies.
By certifying communal-casteist Congress as secular the parties of OBC, Dalit, Muslim and Adivasi have dug their own grave and are about to be pushed into this very grave they have dug for themselves.
Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership ensured Anti-Congress Secular Votes go waste !
But above measures alone were not enough to ensure Arya-Brahminist crown. It also needed that anti-congress secular votes do not go to Parties of Bahujan leadership. Therefore, Arya-Brahmin fake communist leaders deliberately created a weak third front that will waste a significant number of anti-Congress secular votes. To ensure that the so called third front remains weak, name of Mayawati was brought into third front with the active support of BSP general Secretary Satish Mishra (Brahmin) only to keep Mulayam Singh Yadav out of the third front. In spite of their declaring BSP as part of third front Mayavati had no alliance with third front parties and she contested election single handedly. This makes it clear that her inclusion in third front was simply an illusion created to keep Mulayam out of third front in the interest of Arya-Brahmin crown. Mayavati also allowed this illusion to linger simply to prevent Mulayam Singh Yadav from joining third front and getting whatever little help the third front parties would have caused if he had joined the third front. She had also feared that inclusion of Mulayam may have paved a way for Lalu Prasad Yadav and Ramvilas Paswan to join the third front and become her formidable rival.
Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership leading the so called third front supported the stooges and worst enemies of Bahujans having secular mask on their dirty face. For example, one Yashvant Manohar from Nagpur having a reputation of a Bahujan thinker and a literary personality was supported by the Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership. Manohar turned to be a worst enemy of Bahujans as he made propaganda in support of Poona-pact asserting that Poona-Pact has ensured Dalit rights. This meant that communal and racist Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi who fasted to death and compelled Dr. Ambedkar to sign Poona Pact was savior of Dalits and Dr. Ambedkar who opposed Poona pact (and kept on repenting for signing Poona pact) was therefore enemy of Dalits. Arya-Brahminists have been supporting such traitors to glorify Poona pact. One of such traitors is Dr. Tulsiram who dance at the tune of the Arya-Brahminists in support of Poona pact. His one such article is published in Daily Lokmat Samachar (7 June 2009) which is run by a leader of communal-casteist Congress.
Arya-Brahmin fake communist leadership supported degraded Dalit-Bahujan candidates posing them secular and progressive to benefit Communal-Casteist Congress and bring Arya-Brahmin rule in India.
Indirect Support of Arya-Brahmin fake Maoist Leaders to Brahminist Organizations.
It is well established fact that when the exploiter class can not retain power through parliamentary fake democracy they shed their lamb's skin and show their true cruel wild face and impose dictatorship. Once the parliamentary fake democracy is abandoned, the exploiters come into their true face disillusioning vast number of toiling indigenous masses. Then the struggle reaches to higher level and leaders belonging to electioneering parties either have to 1) become inactive and live politically isolated life 2) become lackeys of exploiter class or 3) become revolutionary. Therefore the struggle becomes more bitter and straight forward.
Maoists would have facilitated the success of candidates who are sympathetic towards their struggle and have exerted pressure on these candidates to remain faithful with people. This would have reduced their oppression and misery to great extent. This would have soon resulted in abandonment of parliamentary fake democracy by the Arya-Brahmin exploiter class of India. But the Arya-Brahmin fake Maoist leadership have been spoiling this opportunity deliberately to save Brahminism by enforcing election boycott. This election boycott has caused anti-state terrorism votes to go waste and help the Arya-Brahmin fascist parties to again come to power. The repeated victory of the same oppressor Arya-Brahmin parties has put Maoists in a very precarious position strategically because these Arya-Brahminist parties are in position to ascertain that all the claims of Maoists are fake because "If through Salva Judum and other forms of state terrorism massacres, mass-rapes, mass lootings, devastations, etc. are made, democracy is abandoned and rulers have became tyrants then how people have repeatedly voted in favor of the same rulers ? " Maoist parties have no answer to this argument. Once the victory of the same Arya-Brahmin exploiter party is repeated they get license to unleash all forms of more intensive brutal attacks on the toiling indigenous masses.
Therefore victory of Brahminist parties in Naxal affected belts is solely due to Arya-Brahmin leadership of Maoist parties.
Arya-Brahminists are Enemy of Indigenous Bahujans
Bahujans should realize that the Congress, BJP, Communist etc. parties of Arya-Brahmin leadership have always opposed Mulniwasi rights in the interest of their Savarna community. Did not all the parties of Arya-Brahmin leadership in power delayed OBC reservation over half century ? They declared OBC reservation "in part", only when the liberalization, privatization and globalization could be implemented to finish the reservation. Why reservation in the judiciary is not implemented till this date ?, Why reservation quota is deliberately not filed ?, Why governments tolerated defying of Indian constitution and delivering anti Bahujan judgments by the Arya-Brahmin judiciary ? Arya-Brahmins loot us claiming our welfare. Claiming Dalit welfare they imposed Puna pact and created brigade of Dalit stooges and swallowed our rights one by one. In the name of development we Adiwasi are sent homeless and jobless; Claiming our emancipation through employment guarantee scheme existing facilities and subsidies are being removed in the pretext of creating fund for this scheme which is fraud to extract money for Arya-Brahmin industrialists. The scheme claims to give 100 days work @ 60/- rupees per day to one member of a family. If on the average each family has 5 members then each family member will get only three rupees twenty nine Paisa daily as a result of this scheme (60 X 100) / (5 X 365). Who can forget that America killed millions of people in Iraq, Afghanistan and other parts of the world claiming their liberation and welfare. Such are the shameless methods of Arya-Brahminits throughout the world.
Thousands of such questions lead us to only the conclusion that All parties of Brahmin leadership are enemies of Bahujan interest. We can only hate Arya-Brahmin leaders for whatever they have done to us. Only the open or disguised lackeys or persons with slave mentality can praise or sympathize Arya-Brahmin enemies.
Hoping Our welfare from Enemy is Futile
Is there any use in convincing the exploiters not to exploit ? How can you convince your exploiters to stop exploitation and give Bahujans their due share and rights ? They deny our Bahujan women the reservation in "Women's reservation bill " because they want all seats for their Arya-Brahmin women. They curse us vehemently of dividing women in castes and call themselves apostle of "women equality". If we demand reservation which is right of our community share, they will curse and call us "anti-equality", "disturbing communal harmony" and "dividing the country". On cunning pretexts such as "creamy layer", reservation is denied to well to do OBC, and the poor OBC candidates are denied calling them "not suitable". They will displace us from our century old homes and area which we love most. If we protest they will curse calling us "anti-development". They will demolish our little huts, destroy our life and praise themselves for cleansing dirt and converting city into Shanghai. They will provide cheap electricity, water, land and huge public fund to their Arya-Brahmin industrialists, allow them to loot banks and thus loot the middle class investors. If we object they will curse and call us "anti-industrial growth". They will abolish or reduce subsidies on essential items given from our own public money and transfer this amount to their Arya-Brahmin Industrialists. If we protest they will give us advice to "leave this begging attitude and be self-reliant".
How can we convince the exploiters not to exploit, not to deprive us from our rights and our legitimate share ? Have ever anybody in the word in the history of whole mankind has succeeded ? Nobody have succeed in convincing exploiters. Then why to engage in this futile attempt ? Why keep any hope in enemies ? Why not develop our strength to such height that the exploiter enemy has only alternative to concede our rights.
Why repeat futile unproductive neurotic actions ? Refute any activity which lead us to frustration and strengthen the oppressors. Treat enemies as enemies and friends as friends. When the Congress, BJP, communist etc., parties of Brahmin leadership are enemies of Bahujan interest then why to keep any hope from them ? Why to sympathize or praise their leaders ? Why to vote for enemy parties ? Why not analyze carefully every bait put forth by them ? Unless we do that we can not save ourselves from being cheated and treated as fools by the Arya-Brahmin oppressors. Let us not engage in any activity that does not lead to strengthen our struggle and weaken our enemies. If we have that determination then only we can free ourselves from exploitation. Therefore, consider class and community character of a person. Accordingly analyze his strength, limitations and his motives. If we do not break these fetters then our several generations would remain slaves in Manucracy which is great agony than dying as a lion.