Revolution in South Asia

An Internationalist Info Project

Archive for October 3rd, 2011

Showdown in the factories: Maoist trade unions threaten strike against Maoist-led govt

Posted by Alastair on October 3, 2011

By Winston

A new confrontation is looming in Nepal’s workplaces and streets.

Nepal’s Maoist movement and its sister organisations are currently going through a bitter struggle over the path forward, and nowhere is this more apparent than within the Maoist-affiliated All Nepal Trade Union Federation. The union has split, and there have been violent clashes between rival factions. The establishment faction under ANTUF Chairman Jammarkattel (considered close to Prachanda) has been accused of sending thugs to attack grassroots leaders of the emergent radical union faction.

The radical union faction commands serious weight. In allegiance with Madhesi unions in the southern Terai belt, it has previously carried out strike waves that crippled industry across large swathes of Nepal – and these were strikes explicitly called in defiance of the ANTUF establishment, which struck deals with employers and the government that the union radicals felt delivered too little to the workers, and conceded too much.

Decades of revolutionary struggle and the overthrow of a dynasty that declared itself to be divine have left the Nepali working-class with very high levels of militancy and knowledge of its own power. Strikes and bandhs are everyday occurrences, and the trade unions commonly operate as wings of the various political parties. The ANTUF is arguably the strongest of the trade union federations, and over the past years has certainly been the most militant… However, many within the Maoist trade unions argue this is now no longer the case.  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Nepal News | 1 Comment »