How far a trade union can prove its efficacy as a legitimate means of protest on its issues and grievances in the present day global scenario is the question raised by the media and others at times and this puts a mark of interrogation on their overall relevance. It was altogether a different atmosphere when the unions were born. It happened after innumerable sacrifices by the then leaders and workers including loss of several lives in their struggle to secure some dignity to labour which in it self is a great history. It was not that these leaders and martyrs had launched the movement as a matter of some career or a profession, they in fact did it solely as a matter of mission and service to those who were otherwise looked upon with disdain and hatred by their masters. Capital flourished on the sweat and blood of the labour but the labour in turn was extremely hated by them awarding the workers only atrocities and tortures. Emanate as it did originally from slavery system where men, women and children were bought and sold as slaves in the market like a dead stock item, the entity of a labourer was not that of a worker but just a commodity with no tongue to speak. Ruthless sackings, beatings and even killings were the order of the day to which thousands of workers had to fall a prey. This very scenario, red in tooth and claw in a way, is exclusively covered in this book separately. To be continued as Part(2).
This article is from the manuscript of my book “Beyond the barriers” and is to continue as a serial. This is in response to the request of many a people that I should give certain glimpses from the book to meet their anxiety and inquisitiveness, as it may yet take some more time for the book to come out of the press.