Three District Conferences of AICCTU Held in West Bengal

AICCTU district conferences of North 24 Parganas, Kolkata and Howrah were held in West Bengal in the month of November.

The district conference of North 24 Parganas was held at Naihati on November 20. Prior to this conference, different unions organised their own annual GB / conferences and  executive bodies of the unions were elected. Membership drive was undertaken as an important task onward to the conference. The unions chalked out their own course of action. Delegates from different sectors - Jute, Brick kiln, Mid day meal, Construction, Ordnance factory and Railways participated in the conference. The jute workers said that low industrial wage is not attracting young workers in this labour intensive industry. They added that industry wise charter of demand has been submitted before the Association of Jute Employers and State Labour Department, but till date no conciliation meeting has been convened. The construction workers expressed their dissatisfaction over the present policies of state government and mentioned how all their welfare benefits have been curtailed. The present lull in construction work, scarcity of job opportunities, curtailment in welfare project, cumbersome method of online registration are the present hurdles that need to be addressed. The brick kiln workers said, due to the present policies of the government, one after another brick kiln is shutting down. The delegates from Mid Day Meal sector exposed the role of both Central and State Govt. They pointed out that despite working for few decades, they are not getting minimum wages, deprived of all social security and retirement benefits, and are facing all sorts of humiliation. Their paltry sum of honorarium are not paid on time.

The delegates from Cossipore Gun & Shell factory mentioned that after clamping of Essential Defense Service Act, a new version of ESMA, all sorts of Trade union activities within this industry have come to a halt. Despite management’s extreme high handed attitude and crass anti employee role, the union led by AICCTU is striving to connect with the workers and are maintaining their day to day Trade Union activities. The Railway workers told  all the important functions are gradually being handed over to the private sector and Central Govt has undertaken sweeping privatisation drive in the Railways.

Com Basudev Bose, General Secretary of West Bengal AICCTU was the observer of the conference. He exposed Modi Govt's anti people, anti worker industrial policies which are out and out pro- corporate. The Labour Codes, he mentioned, is a new form of slavery, denuding workers of all their hard earned legal rights.

Out of 119 delegates from different sectors, 28 women participated in this conference. The conference unanimously elected 53 member District Council, 27 member executive committee, 14 Office bearers. Com Narayan Dey, Jayshree Das and Com Nabendu Dasgupta were elected as President, Working President and Secretary respectively of the new Committee.


Kolkata District AICCTU organised their 9th Conference on November 20. Delegates from different sectors – workers of State Transport and Jay Engineering works, Contract workers of Jadavpur University, Uber driver, Rickshaw puller and hawker, domestic workers, Mid day meal and workers of ICDS, Press worker, Construction workers were present in this conference. Out of 74 delegates 19 women workers were present. The retired workers of West Bengal State transport, who have been deprived of their post retirement legitimate dues, also participated in the conference. The participation of unorganised women workers for the first time, was an important development.

The Conference started with an inaugural address by the State President Atanu Chakravarty in which he mentioned the tragic death of the migrant workers at Qatar who were engaged to build the infrastructure of World Cup football, which began on that date, i.e 20 th November. The total indifferent attitude towards these migrant workers, which was starkly exposed during the ruthless Covid Lockdown by the Modi govt was criticised. He also pointed out the adverse effects of four labour codes, dismantling of all the welfare boards, the plight of scheme workers and called upon to take up the challenge to thwart this fascist offensive.

The state transport delegates exposed the real state of affairs within this public sector. Informalisation of workforce is rampant in this sector. A section of drivers engaged during Covid have been retrenched completely illegally. Handing over of this state transport to private players through franchise is gradually gaining steam. The scheme workers complained of their precarious working condition, meager wage in the name of honorarium, sans social benefit and realised united struggle is the only way forward to achieve their demands.

The conference resolved to enroll 6,000 members and 30 cadres before the forthcoming national conference. It also decided to organise the emerging scheme workers, casual contract workers and to expand in newer areas.

The conference elected 56 member district council, 26 member executive body and 13 member Office bearers. It re-elected Com. Prabir Das and Dibakar Bhattacharya as President and Secretary of the committee.


The 4th District Conference of Howrah was held on 27 November. The conference started after Com Tapan Ghosh veteran trade union leader hoisted the red flag and floral tributes were offered by the comrade delegates.

Com Atanu Chakravarty, President of State Committee gave the inaugural speech and said the Trade Unions of the country are facing unprecedented challenge at present. The present government is conspiring to push the trade unions to the margins by ignoring and not inviting trade unions in the last National Labour commission conference. Of late the Finance Minister invited the TUs in a virtual meeting and allotted only 3 minutes for each CTU which was boycotted by all the CTUs.

The Fixed term employment, dismantling of welfare boards, informalising the formal work force, snatching the weapon of strike struggles are some of the attacks of this fascist dispensation. Com Basudev Basu, General Secretary and observer of the conference pointed out the need to organise scheme workers, the emerging social group in the country, and exposed the anti worker role of Mamata Govt. Senior state leader Com Meena Pal also attended the conference and gave her valuable suggestions. Com Nabendu Dasgupta, State leader and President of Bengal Chatkal Mazdoor Forum addressed the conference and called upon the jute workers to join the demonstration on 8 December in front of the office of Labour Minister.

The delegates came from diverse sectors - Jute, construction, Mid Day meal, Domestic workers, gig & platform workers, contract workers of Railways, small engineering firms etc. Low wages, precarious employment, unsafe working condition, highly insecure job condition were the main issues raised by different delegates.

Com Debabrata Bhakta, President of Howrah District summed up the entire proceedings and emphasised the need to expand in newer areas. Out of 81 delegates, 27 were women. The conference unanimously elected Com Debabrata Bhakta and Partha Banerjee as President and Secretary respectively. The conference was presided over by the presidium consisting of   Com NN Banerjee, Kalyani Goswami, Tapan Ghosh & Kishore Rajak as members.