As is known, the steel workers of Wazirpur have been on strike since June 6, under the leadership of ‘Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti’. Today, in the negotiation in Deputy Labour Commissioner’s Office, the owners of all plants gave in to the demands of workers and accepted to implement the 8-hour workday, double rate overtime, minimum wages, ESI, PF for the workers of Wazirpur.
It is a huge victory for the workers as it was not an informal negotiation for some wage increment; almost all the basic labour laws have been enforced in this negotiation.Sunny, member, Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti, told that it is a huge step, but it is only a beginning. Now the new task is to enforce the implementation of today’s agreement and not to allow any owner to flout these labour laws anymore.
Raghuraj, member, Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti, said that the Deputy Labour Commissioner has assured that officials from the labour department will go on surprise inspections throughout the month to ensure the implementation of 8-hour workday and also will be present on the day of payment of wages to ensure that minimum wages are being given. Shivani, legal consultant of the Samiti and an activist of ‘Bigul Mazdoor Dasta’ said that in the context of hopelessness and reversal in the workers’ movement, this victory holds immense importance.
The labour laws had become a laughing stock among the owners and management. However, the steel workers of Wazirpur have shown that if we prevent agent unions of electoral parties, NGOs and funding agencies from entering in the workers’ movement, the workers’ themselves can lead their movement to victory, provided it is guided by correct political ideas. And ‘Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti’ has achieved precisely this objective.
Navin, secretary, Delhi Kamgar Union argued that it was the resilience of the steel workers under a correct political leadership, that ultimately led to this historic victory. He said that the community kitchen run by the striking workers with the support from workers from different parts of the country showed that if workers’ movement transcends the narrow boundaries of factory and occupation and a working class unity across the lines of occupation, region, etc is forged, the workers’ struggles can definitely be won. The steel workers of Wazirpur have shown the way and now all workers of all areas and occupation need to follow this path.
With Revolutionary Greetings,
Raghuraj, Sunny Singh (Members, Leading Committee, Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti)
Shivani (Legal Consultant, Garam Rolla Mazdoor Ekta Samiti)