AICCTU organized a colourful and impressive rally on May Day at Bangalore. More than 3000 workers joined the rally making it the biggest in the city on this May Day. At a time when celebrating May Day has become a routine and ritualistic affair, thousands of workers participated in the rally with brimming hope and enthusiasm as a part of their ongoing struggle against managements and to elevate it to the struggle against the onslaught of the capital.
The composition of the rally itself was quite encouraging with a wide spectrum of most downtrodden and exploited sections of working class, right from sanitation workers to computer operators, representing different sections of the working class in turbulence. Almost all workers, barring few companies, were contract workers from various segments of industries, including central and state public sectors like HAL, NAL, BHEL, BEML, KSWAN, nurses and hospital assistants from government hospitals, race course, multinationals and domestic corporate companies like BOSCH, Lafarge, L&T Komatsu, Prism Cements, Kennametal WIDIA, Stumpp Schuele Somappa Springs Ltd etc. Hundreds of street vendors also took part in the rally.
The rallyists demanded a minimum wage of Rs. 15000 for unorganised sector workers and Rs. 22500 for the unorganised in organised sector, abolition of contract labour system, parity in wages of workers engaged in same and similar kind of work and a service weightage of 10% of basic and DA for each year of service rendered.
Com. Balan, AICCTU State President, called upon workers to intensify the struggle against the onslaught of capital. He emphasised the need to organize the workers of all unorganized sectors and also the unorganised in organised sectors, including contract workers. Com. Bharadwaj, AICCTU State General Secretary, Com. Appanna, State Secretary, Javaraiah, AIALA State President, Prasad, AISA State Convenor, Mohan Kumar, DCM of AICCTU, Srinivas of HAL, Comrades Vinay, Rangaswamy and Babu, leaders of street vendors organization from different areas of Bangalore, Keshav Murthy, president of the union of computer operators of Karnataka State Wide Area Network (KSWAN), Anjanamma, one of the leaders of municipal workers addressed the gathering among others. Com. Clifton D’ Rozario, Karnataka High Court advocate and a social activist for more than a decade, who has dedicated his life for the peoples cause, was declared as Karnataka State Organising Secretary of AICCTU.
Com. Shankar, All India Vice President of AICCTU, criticized the government for its pro-corporate policies, elaborated upon the demands of the rally and called upon workers to raise the level of trade union struggles to political level.