Labors, Workers and Peasants Movement in India
Formation of AITUC: In the second decade of the 20th century a new thing appeared in our freedom struggle. This was the participation of the peasants and workers in the struggle. It was perhaps Gandhiji who among our leaders first used the strength of the workers and peasants.
Gandhiji began the ‘workers’ and peasants’ movement in the 2oth century. Soon this movement changed its character. In 1920 the ‘All India Trade Union congress” (AITUC) was formed. The trade unions are workers’ organization in India the trade union in their early years were led by men like Lajpat Rai and Chittaranjan Das.
Formation of CPI: The workers’ movement in India got a new lease of life when the Communist Party was formed (1925) the Communist leaders like S.A. Dange and Muzaffar Ahmed led the trade unions along socialist ideals. Under the leadership of the communist Party the workers’ movement became militant.
Labor Movement: In 1928 Nehru became President of the all India Trade Union Congress. This AITUC was influenced by the Communist Party. A group of moderate congressmen did not Communist Party too formed its own trade union, called the Red Trade Union Congress. The government by then had become afraid of the activities of the communists. Thirty-three communist leaders were accused and arrested in connection with the famous ‘Meerut Conspiracy”. Of course, by 1935 most of the arrested leaders were freed. For, charges against them could not be proved.
It was a serious attempt by the government to crush the workers’ movement in India. Soon the Government banned the Communist Party. This did not put an end to the Party’s activities. Underground work went on. At that time Jay Prakash Narayan founded Congress Socialist Party in 1934.
Kishan Sabha: Peasant movements took place too at this time. In the Civil Disobedience movement the peasants played an important part. In many districts of the United Province, Bengal and Bihar peasants stopped paying rents. The peasants of East Bengal, Oudh and Berar showed great tenacity. In 1936 an “All India Kishan Sabha” was formed. It was led by the Congress. When Congress ministries were formed in 1937 in different provinces, the peasant movement became stronger owing to congress support.