On 26 November many tens of millions of workers took part in a general strike against India’s far-right government. Indian unions gave a figure of 250 million.
Alongside its fascistic Hindu-chauvinist and anti-migrant policies, which it has intensified during the pandemic, Narenda Modi’s regime has consistently pursued an aggressively neoliberal, anti-working class economic and social agenda. The strike, also backed by a mass farmers’ mobilisation, demanded the withdrawal of Modi’s anti-worker changes to labour law, expansion of social provision, the restoration of subsidies and price guarantees for farmers, and the halting of privatisation (including of publicly-owned banks).
Many unions and groups of workers framed their demands in terms of the government’s dire response to the pandemic and ensuing economic crisis.
The regime responded to the strike with heavy repression, but did not manage to prevent huge participation.
India’s labour movement is weak relative to the size of the country, and heavily fragmented — but it has repeatedly mobilised resistance to the Modi government on a vast scale.
Solidarity with our sisters and brothers in India!