People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 38

September 28 , 2008


Comrade S K Dhar

COMRADE Saroj Kumar Dhar, widely known as S K Dhar, the secretary general of All India Loco Running Staff Association and deputy general secretary of All India Railway Employees Confederation has passed away on September 15, 2008 at the AIIMS Hospital after prolonged illness.

At an early age joined railway service in the department of Loco at Bardhaman, where he soon joined the union and plunged into trade union activity.

He played a very important role in the famous strikes of Locomen in 1973, which forced railway authorities to negotiate with LRSA, though it was not recognized, and he played an equally important role during negotiations.

He played a part in the formation of NCCRS and the historic railway strike of 1974. Comrade Dhar was arrested and detained for about two years during the emergency. In 1976, he was elected secretary general of the LRSA and since then, for 32 years he led the organisation as its secretary general.

When the strike call of LRSA failed in 1981 leaving behind a huge burden of victimization, it was his sheer sincerity and exceptional ability that could hold the organisation together and made a one and a half decade long successful legal battle reinstating most of the victimised.

In 1984, he was elected deputy secretary general of All India Railway Employees Confederation.

His activities never ceased even when he was extremely sick and until his death, he worked for the cause for which he lived.

In the Railway trade union movement with wide influence of reformist ideas, all through his life Comrade Dhar upheld the principle of unity and struggle, the very same principle for which CITU also was formed. There had always been a close fraternal bond between LRSA and CITU.

At the very beginning of his trade union activity, he got acquainted with Marxist ideology and practiced it till his last breath and remained loyal to it.

The CITU meeting organised in BTR Bhavan in New Delhi deeply condoled the death of Comrade Dhar and conveyed sincere sympathies to his bereaved family as well as to the comrades belonging to his organisation.