Unity of Workers at Maruti-Suzuki defeats the manoeuvres of Management and Trade Union Bureaucracy

-Rajesh Tyagi/ 12.10.2011

Strike of the workers, which resumed at Maruti-Suzuki’s Manesar plant this Friday, with a short break after 33 days impasse, has entered its sixth day today. As the Management refused to honour clause 8 of the settlement, stipulating reinstatement of contract workers, workers were constrained to go back to strike.
Due to the present strike, not only the production at Manesar plant has come to a halt, but production at Gurgaon plant, which used to produce 2800 automobiles a day, has substantially dipped to low of 1000, because of solidarity strike by Suzuki Powertrain workers in support of Maruti workers at Manesar. Suzuki Powertrain Ltd. supplies the diesel engines to Gurgaon plant of Maruti.

In our earlier reports, we have shown how the central trade unions like HMS, CITU, AITUC, INTUC dominated by Stalinist CPI-CPM and social democratic trade union bureaucracies of HMS-INTUC, had directly assisted in sell-out of workers interest, against the will of workers. The settlement of October 1, was the culmination of this sell-out. This tripartite settlement, entered into between the management, the Haryana Government, and the trade union bureaucracies, was an outright betrayal of workers’ struggle at the hands of these bureaucracies.

Confronted with their complacence in the settlement, by ‘the new wave’, Mr. S.L. Prajapati of CITU, who is looking after Manesar struggle, claimed that, “we are satisfied with the settlement and have supported the same so that the workers may get inside after 33 days standoff and industrial peace may take place”. This statement speaks for itself about the attitude and role of the Trade Union bureaucracies in breaking the struggle of the workers. Instead of supporting the struggle of the workers to make it a spearhead of broader working class struggle against the whole neo-liberal regime and pro-investor governments of capitalists, in the core industrial region of Gurgaon-Manesar-Dharuhera-Bawal, which houses at least two and a half million industrial workers, these servants of the capital, are striving for ‘industrial peace’.

As workers resumed strike on Friday in complete defiance of them, the trade union bureaucracies of nine central trade unions, in an attempt to cover their role and real faces, have issued a joint statement in relation to the struggle. Apart from Stalinist AITUC-CITU these trade unions include from INTUC, trade union wing of the ruling Congress to BMS the trade union centre of rabidly right-wing BJP. Instead of assisting the workers in spreading the struggle, and instead of calling upon the hundreds of trade unions under them to support the struggle of Maruti workers against the joint strength of capitalists and governments, these trade unions in the joint statement have called upon the Haryana Government and the Central Government to “intervene in the struggle to resolve the contentious issues amicably and restore industrial peace”.

Intervening in the struggle, the labour department of the Haryana Government has however issued show cause notices upon the workers for violation of the settlement. Haryana Government and its labour department have been blindly supporting the employers against the workers from the very first day of the strike. But the trade union bureaucracies instead of warning the government to keep hands off the struggle, are inviting it to intervene, sowing illusions in the minds of the workers of the bourgeoisie governments being the final and legitimate arbiter of the struggle between capital and labour. On the other hand these trade unions are holding back the workers in hundreds of trade unions under them from coming in support of Maruti workers. The role of the trade unions under the bureaucracies headed by Stalinists and social democrats, is to facilitate the “industrial peace”. These bureaucracies are direct props of bourgeoisie inside the labour movement.

In conjunction with each other, the Stalinists and social-democrats, have failed the world working class again and again everywhere, in each corner of the world.

Strike at Manesar plant of Maruti has highlighted the abominable conditions of workers in their life and at work place and the ruthless and repressive regime of corporates and the governments under them. Maruti strike opens up immense possibility of a wide offensive of the working class against the anti-worker regime of corporate making a real headway to political struggle of the proletariat against the corporates.

Resuming of the Maruti strike on Friday, by the workers on their own, in defiance of the trade union bureaucracy, has frightened the corporates, governments and the complacent trade union bureaucracies. Workers in several industrial establishments have already gone on solidarity strike in support of Manesar workers, and If Maruti workers succeed in mobilising more support to the strike and further link it up with general conditions of the workers in the region, the strike may convert anytime to a general strike, opening a new chapter in the struggle of the Indian working class. To prevent this, trade union bureaucracies are calling for 'intervention' from the government.

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