People's Democracy(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
March 18, 2007
‘Worker-Peasant Demands Day’ On April 18
THE Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) and All India Agricultural Workers Union (AIAWU) have jointly decided to campaign all over the country on common issues facing the workers, agricultural workers and farmers. They have decided a phased programme of action culminating in a massive nationwide demonstration on April 18, 2007, which would be observed as ‘Worker-Peasant Demands Day’ on the following common demands:
Check the rise in prices of essential commodities
Restore in full the public distribution system by strengthening procurement with remunerative prices to the peasant and ultimately making it universal
Introduce in parliament comprehensive bills on unorganised labour and agricultural workers
Effective implementation of national employment guarantee scheme and making it universal by covering urban areas
Withdraw cut in custom duties which adversely affects our agriculture and traditional industries
Make ICDS universal and regularise Anganwadi workers along with improving their working and living conditions
Give cheaper credit to farmers and agricultural labour and cancel debts of the poor under distress
Give land to the tiller with special emphasis on SC/ST
Implement all the labour laws and minimum wages
Amend SEZ Act and Rules to protect the interests of the peasants, agricultural workers and other affected people
The CITU, AIKS, AIAWU and other unions will hold state level meetings to chalk out details of the programmes to be organised on April 18, 2007.
The three organisations have decided to jointly hold district-wise rallies to highlight their demands.
Joint conventions will be organised in all the states to prepare for the united actions. Joint leaflets, posters and wall writings would be some of the means adopted to popularise the demands and make the observation of the day a massive success.
All organisations involved have been requested to make special efforts to involve working women in large numbers in the action programme.
There is acute discontent among the workers, agricultural labour and farmers about the deteriorating living conditions. Suicides of peasants and workers in sick industries is only one of the reflections of the prevailing discontent. The three mass organisations have underlined that in the present critical situation, the need of the hour is developing the alliance of workers and peasants in the country. They have appealed to the cadres of all organisations to rise to the occasion and strive their best to make the action programme a grand success.