CITU congratulates people - For Observing Protest Day Countrywide on 21st April For Raising Their Voice for the Prime Minister to Hear

CITU congratulates people all over the country for observing all India Protest Day on 21st April 2020 by strictly following the physical distancing and other guidelines issued by the government to contain the corona virus. People across the country had one important message for the Prime Minister – ‘We Have Heard Enough. Now, Please Hear Us’

Tens of thousands of workers and other toiling people stood up at thousands of locations covering all the districts of the country and in many subdivisions and villages - in front of their homes, on their balconies or roof tops, work places,  placards and flags in hands, maintaining physical distance and shouting slogans for 5-10 minutes on 21st April 2020 at 10.30 in the morning. In several places it was a single person standing in front of her/ his home holding a hand written placard, in many along with their family members including children and in still many more people stood in scores displaying placards and shouting slogans. Migrant workers, stranded away from home, without proper shelter and regular food stood up with their demands written on pieces of paper. The fact that it was observed in all states from Jammu & Kashmir to Tamil Nadu and Kerala, from Gujarat to Assam indicates that the slogans resonated with the feelings of the people. In Tripura, even though preparations were made, the state government prevented it from being observed even from within the compounds. The CITU state committee strongly condemned the government notification and wrote a letter to the Prime Minister.  

The one common slogan that resounded across the country was ‘Bhashan nahin; ration chahiye; vetan chahiye; arthik sahayata chahiye’ (Enough of hollow speeches; Give us food; wages and financial assistance). The slogan spread like wild fire across the country in less than a day.

The call given by CITU was supported by All India Kisan Sabha, All India Agricultural Workers’ Union, All India Democratic Women’s Association, Democratic Youth Federation of India, Students Federation of India, Dalit Soshan Mukti Manch, Adivasi Adhikar Rashtriya Manch and National Platform for the Rights of Disabled. Several unions of middle class employees and in some states, state committees of some central trade unions also supported and joined the call.

The programme was observed in collieries, tea gardens, construction sites, in the townships of public sector units like steel, workers’ colonies, in places where large numbers of unorganised sector workers stay, as well as at the factories and work places where they are open. Safai karmacharis, ASHAs, anganwadi employees, and others joined in thousands of places. The peasants and agricultural workers as well as the scheme workers participated in the villages. In some places, memoranda were submitted to the local authorities.

In Maharashtra, MH Sheikh, general secretary of CITU state committee and in Gautam Budha Nagar, Gangeshwar, vice president of Delhi NCR state committee, and eight activists in Behala, Kolkata were arrested.

While condemning these arrests and the high handed attitude of the administration in Tripura, CITU called upon the people to be united and prepared for stronger actions in the coming days as the situation improves, if the government continues with its apathy to the poor while showering bonanzas over the big corporates and business houses.

Tapan Sen
General Secretary

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