A Tribute to Maharashtra Day & International Labour Day
Towards the end of the 19th century, in the United States, a resolution was passed, which changed the course of history for workers not just in America, but eventually, the entire globe. Labourers throughout our history, have been exploited with their rights taken away from them, poor working conditions, lengthy working hours, days, and even weeks, and so on. In 1886, following these hardships and exploitation, the labour union workers eventually came together, protesting and demanding an 8 hr. workday, replacing, the earlier in practice, brutal 15 hr. workdays. Their struggle for their rights finally proved fruitful, as on 1st May 1889, the Marxist International Socialist Congress adopted the resolution, thereby implementing a law that states that the workers should not be made to work for more than 8 hrs. a day. After this, May the 1st, became an annual event, and was declared as the ‘Labour Day’, aka ‘May Day’.
Soon after, on July 14, 1889, at the first International Congress of Socialist Parties in Europe, it was declared that May 1 would be observed as the ‘Workers Day of International Unity and Solidarity’, as a part of the labour union movement. It didn’t take much time for it to catch to the rest of the world. Today, several countries observe the ‘May Day’, including China, Russia and of course India.
In 1923, the Labour Kisan Part of Hindustan celebrated India’s first May Day. The then Communist leader Malayapuram Singaravelu Chettiar requested the govt. to announce the day as a national holiday, to honour the efforts of every worker in India. In India, May Day is also known as Kamgar Divas, Kamgar Din and Antrarashtriya Shramik Divas.This Labour Day, let us appreciate and respect the hard work our workers contribute, towards building our nation, for, they are the true architects of the New India.
Today also marks the day Maharashtra was crowned as a ‘State’, breaking out from the ‘Bombay State’. As our state is currently in the midst of the fight against the COVID-19, let us strive to do our part in the fight by following the Govt. instructions, staying at home unless absolutely necessary, wearing a mask, and maintaining social distancing. Together, we can beat it. We wish you a Happy Maharashtra Day!
On this holiday, let us make a slight shift in our paradigm. Let us make the Hol ‘I’ day (Holiday) as Hol ‘Y’ day (Holyday) ~ ‘You’ day. Instead of focusing on the ‘I’, on ourselves, use it to serve “Y’ for ‘You’ the person in front ~ ‘the every other’. Live for other people. Help someone, anyone ~ be it a friend, a member of your own family, a neighbour, a security guard, a maid, or whoever. Help them with not just money, food, clothes, or anything material. But more than that, help them ~ With your best and kind ‘Smile’ ~ your attention, your love, your knowledge. These are testing times for everyone. One kind act from you could change their whole day ~ their life! Stay safe!