ptvnews desk: They are human beings, they are gods, they sing their songs, they rise in their afflicted chests and rise again! These two outstanding lines of the rebellious poet Kazi Nazrul Islam’s poem ‘Kulimjur’ convey the respect and true dignity of the workers. Today is the great May Day. This day is celebrated as International Workers’ Day in many countries of the world including Bangladesh, which is known as’ May Day ‘. This day is celebrated in May 18 in memory of a historic movement and struggle for workers’ rights. May 1 is the glorious day of the bloody struggle for the rights of working people. On this day in 18, the workers called for a strike in all industrial areas of the United States demanding the right to work eight hours a day. In front of the Chicago O Market
Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. Immediately after that, the workers’ protest in O Market spread all over the world. Greater unity of workers and masses was formed. Eventually, in the face of intense agitation, the US government was forced to accept the workers’ demand for eight hours a day. In commemoration of the sacrifices made by the workers for their rights, the 2nd International Labor Conference held in Paris in 1899 decided to observe the day as ‘May Day’. In that continuity, the day is being celebrated in all the countries of the world today. In 1972, May Day was celebrated with great enthusiasm in Bangladesh. In the same year, May 1 was declared a public holiday in the newly independent country. Like every time, the Ministry of Labor and Employment has taken various programs on the occasion of May Day, but due to Corona, no program is being held this time.
Today is a public holiday. On the occasion of the day, the President gave a separate message. Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, BNP Acting Chairman Tarique Rahman and Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.
Note that this situation was even worse in the early nineteenth century. Workers then worked 12-14 hours a day but did not receive a small wage. In addition there was the constant unspeakable torture of the owner. In 180 the workers demanded eight hours a day without reducing their wages. For this, they later formed an organization called the American Federation of Labor. This organization continues its movement for the realization of the wages and rights of the workers.
In 184, the organization set a time limit of eight hours for working hours. The time is given till May 1, 18. Repeated demands were made to the owners but they did not respond. A shocking article was published in a newspaper. Yes, the rebellion became extreme. And Chicago became the main stage of the protest. As May Day approached, clashes between the two sides became inevitable. The owner-merchant class rejected that offer. In the meantime, the police had earlier brutally tortured them, and preparations were underway again. The traders bought special weapons from the police to shoot at the workers. On May 1, about 300,000 U.S. workers left their jobs and took to the streets. The movement culminated. On the evening of May 3, 18, some police officers stood away from workers gathered in the Chicago O Market commercial area. At that time, some policemen were injured in a sudden bomb blast and later six people died. Later, when the police also attacked the workers, 11 workers were killed. Six people were publicly hanged by the police in a case of murder of workers. But the crime of this false trial was eventually caught. On June 26, 1893, the Illinois government announced that the trial was a hoax. The police commander was charged with corruption. In the end, the workers’ demand for “eight hours of work daily” was almost officially recognized. Since then, May 1 has been celebrated as a day of workers’ self-sacrifice and demand.
BNP’s message on the occasion of the great May Day
On the occasion of the great May Day, BNP Acting Chairman Tarique Rahman extended his best wishes to all the hard working people of the world including all the Bangladeshi workers and employees working at home and abroad. The statement, signed by BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi, was in recognition of the united movement that the working people of North America started for 6 hours a day, fair wages and a decent life on this day in 18 and succeeded in the days that followed. Today, May 1 is being celebrated worldwide as ‘Great May’ Day. This day is therefore a symbol of unity, struggle and victory of the working people. This year, working people infected with the corona virus are working for the country and the people, risking their lives in the midst of the crisis. The driving force of their courageous activities is also the consciousness of the great May Day. As a result of such courage and sacrifice of the working and professional people in this great crisis of mankind, the wheel of the almost stagnant economy is still turning – people are getting services and treatment. He extended heartfelt congratulations to all the people in the national and international service, industry and business sectors on this great day and called upon the government, the owners and the people of all walks of life to come forward for their welfare and protection.
Message of BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir on the occasion of the great May Day 2020