Mazdoor Ekta Committee and Lok Raj Sangathan joined hundreds of activists of several organisations on 22nd September in a joint protest action in support of the struggles of the workers of Maruti-Suzuki. The protestors took out a militant rally from Delhi’s Mandi House to Haryana Bhavan, where they demonstrated.
The protestors raised slogans like : “Hooda government must stop supporting the management”, “End the illegal lock-out”, “An attack on one is an attack on all”, “Down with the anti-worker policies of the Congress government of Haryana” and “The Centre and Haryana state governments must stop the suppression of the struggles of the Maruti-Suzuki workers!”
It is to be recalled that the Maruti-Suzuki workers had gone on a 13-day strike in June at the Manesar Plant, in support of their right to form their union. The management did not want this. After they reached a reconciliation, the workers submitted their application for registration of the union. The management, in cahoots with the Hooda government raised all sorts of technical objections to get the registration cancelled. Fraudulent allegations were made against the workers’ leaders.
The management declared a lock-out in the plant on 29th August. They made it mandatory for all the workers to sign a bond of “good conduct”. This was a legal document to establish the will of the management in violation of the workers’ every right. Maruti-Suzuki employees union refused to sign the bond.
Many students, youth, representatives of workers’ organisations and trade unions spoke at the demonstration in support of the struggles of the workers of Maruti-Suzuki. The spokesperson of the Communist Ghadar party of India and Secretary of the Mazdoor Ekta Committee raised two important issues in his speech on the occasion.
He pointed out that the attack on the workers of Maruti-Suzuki is an attack on all workers and their rights. It is a decisive struggle. On the one hand, the Japanese management of Suzuki, the Central Government, the Haryana government and the Indian and foreign monopolies are joined in suppressing this struggle and carrying out a vicious attack on the rights of workers.
On the other hand, workers of our country and the world wish with all their heart that the workers win this struggle so that it will push forward the broad struggles for rights of workers. The workers of Gurgaon-Manesar belt have, by coming out on the streets every day, clearly shown their understanding of the fact that an attack on one is an attack on all and a victory for one is a victory for all. Now the time has come for all unions and organisations of workers to prove this. I am very inspired by today’s action. Many students are present here, and we are participating with full consciousness in this struggle.
This is evidence that our future is bright, though we are facing innumerable obstacles. Com. Prakash added that like Arjuna, we must be steadfast in our aim. History is proof that it will be against our interests to waver in our common aim and instead target each other for attack. Our aim at this time is the Centre and state government. To make the management of Maruti-Suzuki bend down to accede to our demands and to realise our demands for our rights is our immediate aim.
At the conclusion of the demonstration, a body of representatives of the various organisations submitted the demands of the workers to the Haryana Bhavan Commissioner. These demands were:
- To unconditionally reinstate all the workers and leaders of the struggle who had been either expelled or suspended;
- To cancel the illegal lock-out and withdraw the illegal bond;
- To recognize and register the Maruti-Suzuki Employees Union.