Students' protest in Bihar: Halt the privatisation of railways

On 25th October, 2019 students took out a massive demonstration and carried out a campaign to block trains. This campaign was carried out in several cities of Bihar – Patna, Aarah, Sasaram, Nawada, Aurangabad, Samastipur and other cities. Thousands of student-youth participated in these protests; such a widespread protest had not been witnessed before. The protests started with blocking roads in Sasaram. When the police removed the students from there, they moved to the railway station and sat on the rail tracks and blocked the trains coming from and going to Mugalsarai. Nearly 20 trains were blocked between 10:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.

Bihar students protest against railway privatisation
Bihar students protest against railway privatisation
Bihar students protest against railway privatisation

Students started gathering from the morning in several stations. They were holding banners with the demand, "Halt the privatisation of railways!" The air was resounding with thunderous slogans of “Halt the privatisation and corporatisation of railways!” “Stop the sale of railways to capitalists!” “Railways are the property of the Indian people and not private property!” “Begin recruitment immediately!” “Fill the vacant posts in railways immediately!” “We are with the railway workers!” “This is just the beginning, the struggle is going to intensify!” The students demonstrated on the tracks in several stations; they marched on the tracks in Aurangabad and stopped trains in Nawada. In Patna, there were massive demonstrations against the privatisation of railways and termination of more than 3.5 lakh posts.

The police used lathi charge and tear gas to suppress the protests and at the end of this, they arrested 18 students. The police tried to identify the remaining protestors through use of video so that they could arrest and harass them as well.

The students were very angry that government jobs would be unavailable due to the privatisation of the railways. They pointed out that there were no vacancies because of privatisation of railways and there were no jobs for jobless youth. The students were echoing this in several districts across the state. The protestors were pointing out that with privatisation of railways, their hopes for a government job were all but lost; till now, Indian Railways was one of the largest employers.

The Ministry of Railways has formed a committee to look into the privatisation of 50 railway stations and 150 trains. This is going on even as Railway Minister Piyush Goyal has been claiming that “government is not privatizing railways, it is only planning to bring in public-private partnership.”

According to the administration, talk of privatisation is based on rumours. The student protestors questioned, “if privatisation of railways is only a rumour, then why is it that all of a sudden the jobs in railways are drying out? And why is the government not coming clean with how this PPP model that it is thinking of is going to be implemented on the ground? To what extent would the private sector be participating?” The students were of the view that the opposition of railway workers alone will not suffice. Students would have to play their role in order to realize victory in this struggle, i.e. to defeat the privatisation, corporatization and outsourcing work in the railways.

It is a fact that the government is proceeding with the privatisation of railways. Its functions are being broken into parts and being sold off to the capitalists. Just recently, the first Indian privat train “Tejas” has been launched. This has been opposed by every section of railways. It provoked several demonstrations and blockade of trains. The privatisation of railways is being opposed by railway unions, political parties and student organisations.

Tag:   

Share Everywhere

Nov 16-30 2019    Struggle for Rights    Rights     2019   

PARTY DOCUMENTS

Election manifesto of a CGPI supported candidate for Lok Sabha

 

Parties of the capitalist class claim that there is no alternative to the program of globalisation,liberalisation and privatisation. The truth is that there IS an alternative.

The alternative is to reorient the economy to fulfil people’s needs instead of fulfilling capitalist greed. This is the program for the Navnirman of India.

Click on the thumbnail of the election manifesto of a CGPI supported candidate for Lok Sabha to download the PDF.

 

5th Congress DocumentThe Report to the Fifth Congress of the Communist Ghadar Party of India, presented by Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of the CGPI, on behalf of its Central Committee, was discussed and adopted by the Fifth Congress of the CGPI, held in November 2016. By decision of the Fifth Congress, this report has been edited for publication.

(Click thumbnail to download PDF)

Click to Download PDFThe first part of this pamphlet is an analysis of facts and phenomena to identify and expose the real aims behind the Note Ban. The second part is devoted to a critical appraisal of the government’s claims that it will reduce inequality, corruption and terrorism. The third part is what Communist Ghadar Party believes is the real solution to these problems and the immediate program of action towards that solution.

(Click thumbnail to download PDF)

These Elections are a FarceInterview with Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of Communist Ghadar Party of India by Comrade Chandra Bhan, Editor of Mazdoor Ekta Lehar

(Click thumbnail to download PDF)

Manifesto 2014There is growing realisation among workers, peasants and other self-employed people that the program of liberalisation and privatisation only serves to enrich an exploiting minority at their expense. Mass resistance is growing to this anti-worker, anti-peasant and anti-national program. However, the working class is being prevented from realizing its potential as the leader of all the exploited, and as the grave-digger of capitalism, by those in the communist movement who are spreading harmful illusions and compromising the class struggle.

(Click thumbnail to download PDF)

Click to Download PDFInterview with Comrade Lal Singh, General Secretary of Communist Ghadar Party of India

by Comrade Chandra Bhan, Editor of Mazdoor Ekta Lehar

(Click thumbnail to download PDF)