Ulhasnagar Samiti and Padagha local committee celebrate International Women’s Day! (IWD)
Ulhasnagar Samiti celebrates IWD
On 21st March’10 , Ulhasnagar had a festive air as the local Samiti of Lok Raj Sangathan along with Purogami Mahila Sangathan organized a public meeting to celebrate the 100th anniversary of International Women’s day. On the 19th, sports competitions were organized for women and children of Shanti nagar and neighboring areas. The local people and most of all the women who participated in these events with enthusiasm enjoyed themselves thoroughly. In preparation for the meeting, thousands of leaflets explaining the history and importance of IWD were distributed during the week in all the surrounding areas.
A young teacher gave the introductory speech on behalf of Purogami Mahila Sangathan. She explained briefly the oppressive condition that Indian women continue to face even after more than 60 years of “Independence”. She also explained that the struggle for women’s emancipation is a part and parcel of struggle for ending exploitation of man. As she ended her speech, she called upon the audience to reply to the question: “Will we carry forward the glorious struggle that we have waged until we are ultimately victorious?” women, men & youth with no hesitation responded in one voice “Yes , we will!”.
Dr. Sanjeevni, vice president of Lok Raj Sangathan who spoke next, explained that people have to enjoy political power for a permanent solution of the problems faced by the people, such as shelter, livelihood, food security, etc. She also explained that in preparation for ensuring that people have the power in their hands, we have to build and strengthen local samitis that can take up the local issues confronting the people, as well as participate in the struggle for renewal of democracy. Political local samitis will be in a position to mobilize, & train the people so that when the time comes they can take power in their own hands.
The third speaker was from the Communist Ghadar Party of India who spoke of the exploitative capitalist system and that most of the rights, trade union, social & political that are enjoyed today by women all over the world was the result of struggles. He spoke of the genuine emancipation of women that was enjoyed by the women in the first socialist state that was established after the triumphant October revolution. In our country also unless Socialism is established women’s emancipation is not possible. He exposed the fact that the dirty aim of ruling classes behind the Women’s Reservation Bill was to give this illusion that women from the ruling classes who come to power will uphold the interest and rights of working women. History has shown that this does not happen.
The meeting ended with a very beautifully organized cultural program in which the young people played a major part and with slogans upholding IWD, unity of women, men & youth, and resolves to strengthen the local Lok Raj Samiti.
Padagha local committee organizes International Women’s Day!
Not far from Bhiwandi, in Padagha, a cluster of many small villages, the local LRS samiti organised a most successful and unforgettable women’s day celebrations on the 28th of March 2010. Padagha comprises of wage laborers and small farmers, and contract laborers in various small factories in Bhiwandi & Kalyan.
When the local committee of Lok Raj Sangathan decided to celebrate the IWD centenary, there was much excitement. Leaflets were distributed two weeks prior to the public meeting. People were met individually and in groups and explained the significance of the IWD, the status of working women and men of India, and the need for establishing Lok Raj and as a first step the need for establishing Lok raj samitis. People of Padagha responded vigorously, especially when it came to the livewire issues of ration and price rise. The campaign became even more lively as local schools, doctors, old CPI members and some young communist youth, Mahila Bachat Gat activists and leaders, and many others actively participated and pldged cooperation.
A day prior to the meeting a sports competition was organized for women and this generated enthusiastic participation. As 28th dawned, the venue was decorated with banners of organizations Purogami Mahila Sangathan, Lok Raj Sangathan, CGPI & Ladaku Garment Mazdoor Sangh , calling for unity of people. The stage was decorated with banners hailing the Centenary of IWD and calling people to build Local Lok Raj Samitis.
The lighting of the lamp was done by representatives of local fighting women, Muslim girls’ representative, Mahila Bachat Gat leader & LRS Vice President. As the lamp was being lit, it was but fitting that the PMS song in Marathi calling women to get ready to fight for women’s emancipation was presented by eight local women.
One young local teacher explained the history and significance of IWD. The Purogami Mahila Sangathan speaker highlighted and explained that the struggle for women’s emancipation is closely linked with the fight to establish socialism in our country. She recalled immense sacrifices by working women and men in not only liberating our country from the British but in producing wealth of our country. “All this wealth belongs to working women & men”, she said. While exposing the Women’s Reservation Bill as an attempt of the ruling classes to divert and divide the struggle for women’s emancipation, she explained that the real emancipation of women is possible only when political power of our country will be in the hands of working women & men.
The Mahila Bachat Gat leader very succinctly elaborated various problems faced by people of Padagha , especially the problem of price rise and non performing rationing system. She thanked Lok Raj Sangathan for taking the initiative in organizing the program.
Molkarin Sangathan activist leader and member of Lok Raj Sangathan , who had come all the way from Mumbai, illustrated how the united strength of their members through long struggle had resulted in achieving the right to have ration from ration shops and how the ration shop owners are extremely scared of their activists! She called upon the people to unite and organize and congratulated the Padagha Lok Raj Samiti for the successful meeting.
Ladaku Garment Mazdoor Sangh leader explained briefly various rights of people vis-à-vis the PDS. He also explained various government policies which are rendering it ineffective. When he said that the rationing system should be fully in control of local people’s committees, this was met with great audience enthusiasm and applause.
The speaker from LRS explained that the first step in the direction of power in the hands of working people is to organize ourselves in local Lok Raj Samitis. He explained that only such local samitis are really capable and hence should not be marginalized and have a decisive say in finalizing policies which govern our country.
Powada songs, drama, and dances were presented by children and youth from local Marathi, Urdu & English schools. The audience appreciated each and every bit of the program and ended the meeting with slogans hailing IWD!