Various organizations like Jan Sangharsh Manch, Jan Sangathan Manch, MNREGA Mazdoor Union, Janwadi Mahila Samiti, Anganwari Workers Union, Samtamulak Mahila Samiti, CITU Haryana, Bhatta Mazdoor Union, Krantikari Naujawan Sabha, Inqlabi Mazdoor Kendra, Bigul Mazdoor Dasta, Sangrami Shramik Committee PUD, have extended support to ongoing protest of Maruti workers in Haryana against the state government’s ‘anti-workers policy’ and exploitation by management.
The indefinite dharna was launched on 24th March 2013 in front of the residence of Haryana Industries Minister, Randip Singh Surjewala.
There main issues underpinning the struggle are immediate release of all arrested workers, reinstatement of all terminated workers and an impartial enquiry into the incident of 18th July.
Following the July 18 incident, 2300 workers were terminated, 147 workers continue to languish in jail and have not been granted bail or even parole, and 65 still have non-bailable arrest warrant against them.
HERE IS THE STATEMENT BY MARUTI WORKERS UNION
Friends and Comrades,
The last three days of our Fast Unto Death, participated by Com. Ramniwas, Com. Amarjeet, Com. Rakesh, Com. Krishan in Kaithal, Haryana have seen our agitation gather strength. We continue to receive increasing support from nearby local toiling people, and from the factory, our struggle is spreading daily into Haryana society. The government-administration tried different means to tire us out. They increased police force in front of the State Industries Minister, R.S. Surjewala’s house, imposed cases of ‘occupation of private land’ and ‘threat of murder to owner of the land’. On 1st April 2013, on 5th day of our hunger strike, we set up our protest site in Mini Secretariat, Kaithal and intense pressure forced the District Collector to come and promise to take back these false cases. While the health of Hunger Strikers deteriorated, and we told that this responsibility rests with the admin, for the first time on the 5th day, the administration was forced to send the government doctors. Various mass organizations like Jan Sangharsh Manch, Jan Sangathan Manch, MNREGA Mazdoor Union, Janwadi Mahila Samiti, Anganwari Workers Union, Samtamulak Mahila Samiti, CITU Haryana, Bhatta Mazdoor Union, Krantikari Naujawan Sabha, Inqlabi Mazdoor Kendra, Bigul Mazdoor Dasta, Sangrami Shramik Committee PUDR and others demonstrated and expressed their support for our struggle.
On 2nd April 2013, the 6th day of hunger strike, thousands of toiling people which included our family members and relatives of jailed worker saathis, and local village panchayat leaders, came in our support. We marched throughout the city to the State Industries Minister’s house in a massive rally. Young and old, grandmothers and barely a few month old infants all rallied together strengthening our voice with their slogans. A large number of women, marched against the attack on their household’s livelihoods, their children’s education and their own well being, as the sole bread winner of their family was either put behind bars or left unemployed by Maruti management and the Haryana govt.
We resolved that we will not rest till justice is delivered. The administration responded only by barricading the house with a huge police contingent, and sent out word only after speakers addressing the demonstration warned that if no one was sent to talk to them in 10 minutes then the people would have to think again about other more effective ways of reaching the administration. The militant demonstration blocked the Kaithal-Kurukshetra highway for more than three hours. The Industries Minister, who had earlier told us that his ‘only job as Industrial Minster is to acquire land for companies’, had to give in to this pressure. A meeting was fixed with the Chief Minister of Haryana, Bhupinder Singh Hooda in Chandigarh for 3rd April 2013.
On 3rd April 2013, the 7th day of hunger strike, the Provisional Working Committee members went to meet the CM, where the pressure on him was evident because of our struggle. The Hunger Strike and Dharna continued in the court complex of Kaithal district. We had earlier met CM Hooda on 21st February 2013 where he had called us criminals and justified the repression, including the arrest of Provisional Working Committee member Imaan Khan. But yesterday, the CM and the Industries Minister gave word that the Addl. Labour Commissioner, Gurgaon will be informed that the workers who do not have cases in their name be taken back on duty. The jailed workers on whom the criminal case is going on as ‘State of Haryana v Jiya Lal &Others’ will not be dealt with vengeance, they promised.
On 4th April 2013, on the 8th day, we decided to end our Hunger Strike but continue our Dharna on the same site in Kaithal. Hundreds of people from various workers, students and mass organizations again came in support our struggle. The fighting spirit of our fasting comrades has inspired us all. We are determined in our struggle and not to be fooled by fake promises of ministers or administrators. Otherwise we are prepared to take even larger steps and spread the spirit of struggle in the society.
In the space of these last two years, we have fought within the factory against the exploitative working conditions, sought to link our struggle with the struggle of other workers, especially against the contract worker system. We have and will continue to do this. At present, we are continuing with the campaigning in the towns and villages, and are attempting to link with the struggle of toiling masses in society. We are determined to take the struggle forward against the present model of development which the government, on the behest of the capitalists like Maruti Suzuki company, is imposing on our exploited selves.
We appeal to all workers and other sections of society, trade unions and mass and democratic organizations to extend solidarity with the struggle.
Long Live Working Class Unity!
Provisional Working Committee
Maruti Suzuki Workers Union