|General Secretary, AITUC, 35-36 DDU MARG, Rouse Avenue, New Delhi – 110 002 Tele No. 011 23217320 , 23220264 Fax: 011 23222427|
All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) was founded in 1920 with Lala Lajpat Rai as its first president. Upto 1945 Congressmen, Socialists, Communists worked in the AITUC which was the central trade union organisation of workers of India. Subsequently the trade union movement got split on political lines.The membership of the AITUC is 3.6 million. The unions affiliated to AITUC are from textile, engineering, coal, steel, road transport, electricity board and of unorganised sector such as beedi, construction and head-load workers, anganwadi, local bodies and handloom. Recently a number of agriculture workers’ unions have affiliated themselves to AITUC.
The first session of the AITUC was held under the presidentship of Lala Lajpat Rai. In his presidential address, he exhorted the workers:
“Indian labour should lose no time to organize itself on a national scale. Capital is organized on a world-wide basis. It is backed up by financial and political strength, beyond conception. In order to meet the danger, Indian labour will have to join hands with labour outside India also, but its first duty is to organize itself at home”.
“At present, our greatest need is to organize, agitate and educate. We must organize our workers, make them class-conscious and educate them in the ways and interests of common weal.”
The General Secretary of the AITUC is Gurudas Dasgupta, a prominent policitical leader and leader of the Communist Party of Indiaand presently Member of Pariament (Lok Sabha). The AITUC is a member of the World Federation of Trade Unions.(WFTU) which has large membership world over About WFTU there will be separate page under International Trade Union Organisations
“’ Although the organization was originally formed to give Indian representation at the League of Nations’ International Labor Organization (ILO), it also met an increasing need for such a body for the rapidly expanding labor movement in India. There had been an increasing number of protests and organized lobbying in the late 1800s. This was during British rule and was a reaction against many of the conditions imposed at that time. In the wake of the upheaval caused by World War One, working people all over the world be can to view their situations with new eyes. There was a huge amount of activity and protest involving working class people during these early years of the twentieth century.’”
“It was during these years that the AITUC was formed, and this represented the birth of the trade union movement as we now recognise it. Through the 1920s there was an increasing involvement in the AITUC by British communists and this continued through the 1930s up to the Second World War. At this point the British Communist members exercised a controlling influence over the organization.
The AITUC is actively involved in organising workers and has considerable membership in sectors/industries related to Agriculture, Cement , Sugar .Textile, Jute, Beedi, Cigar, Tobacco, Electricity and Power sector, Fertilisers & Chemical , Aluminium, Engineering, Coal. Mines, Hospitals, Road Transport. National Thermal Power Corporation, Atomic energy Projects. Construction
AITUC is affiliated to World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU ) a major International Trade Union which has affiliates all over the world AITUC and affiliates have significant presence all over the country both in private and public sector enterprises. and enjoys considerable respect and clout . AITUC owes allegiance to Communist Party of India (CPI) General Secretary of AITUC Com Gurdas Das Gupta is member of Parliament ILok Sabha) is a very strong spokesman of the working class and is a highly respected and popular leader of workers in the country. AITUC is represented on Indian Labour conference Tripartite Body constituted by the Labour Ministry of Government of India . The organisation is also represented in various committees constituted by the Government of India
One of the largest bank employees –the All india Bank Employees Association ( AIBEA ) and All India Bank Officers Association (AIBOA ) both of which are part United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) which has been advancing the cause of bank workers in the country. owes allegiance to the fraternity of AITUC and CPI has been in the forefront of all working class struggles and well known leaders Com rad Prabhat Kar and Com H L. Parvana are legendary figures in the Indian Trade Union Movement
Comrade S.A.Dange was at the helm of the both CPI and AITUC and WFTU a for long time and led the organisations for a number of years .Many of the leaders of CPI and AITUC were and are still associated with Indian Labour movement for a number of years and have played prominent role in advancing the cause of working class in the country . One cannot think of left movement without CPI and AITUC It has played a remarkable role in advancing the cause of the working class and is still playing a significant role in advancing the cause of working people in the country. Comrade Gurudas Dasgupta M.P. General Secretary of AITUC is one of the outspoken critic of governmental policies in the parliament on issues affecting the working class
The broad aims and objects of AITUC are:
- To establish a socialist state in India;
- To socialize and nationalize the means of production, distribution and exchange as far as possible;
- To ameliorate the economic and social conditions of the working class;
- To watch, promote, safeguard and further the interests, rights and privileges of the workers in all matters relating to their employment.
- To secure and maintain for the workers :
The freedom of speech The freedom of press The freedom of association The freedom of assembly The right of strike ; and The right to work or maintenance To co-ordinate the activities of the trade unions affiliated to the AITUC; To abolish political or economic advantage based on caste, creed, community, race or religion; to fight against all forms of social oppression and injustice; To fight against all forms of atrocities against women and harassment at place of work.
The AITUC shall endeavor to further the aforesaid objects by all legitimate, peaceful and democratic methods such as legislation and, in the last resort, by strikes and similar other methods, as the AITUC may, from time to time, decide.
The web site www.aituc.org will give more information into the organisation’s on the current activities in politics and labour movement , its leaders in various states of Indian Union, and also the affiliations at the international level and the various indusrial federations and their work
AITUC publishes a periodical titled TRADE UNION RECORD which gives information about the AITUC’S and its affiliated unions’activites their conferences, meetings achievements, struggles on the working class front.
After obtaining permission from the organisation we shall be giving important extracts from their journals and their web site in the Labour Herald