Workers in Emerging Sectors
56. The IT sector, various IT-enabled services, BPO, call centres, financial services, sales and media and communication have emerged as a new and significant source of employment for the educated youth. These new sectors have thrown up all kinds of jobs but most of these jobs are highly exploitative and insecure. There is no regulation of working hours and many workers often end up working for as many as 12 hours and even more a day. The trade union rights in these sectors are usually sought to be curbed by bringing them under the ‘essential services’ category, but despite such stifling conditions IT workers are exhibiting encouraging signs of organising and fighting for their rights. The entry of such highly skilled and intellectually advanced work force in the arena of working class movement is an exciting prospect and revolutionary communists must do all they can to realise this possibility.
Tasks of the Proletariat and the Communist Vision
57. In the struggle against its class adversary and the state, workers are not alone. All other sections of working people, peasants and adivasis especially but the youth, the middle classes, and the intelligentsia and other strata as well, are rising in arms to defend their rights, their land, their livelihood and their freedom against growing corporate-state offensive.Where the big bourgeoisie leads the anti-people nexus of corporate, feudal and imperialist powers, the proletariat must lead the fighting alliance of all working masses, extending one hand to the fighting peasantry and the other to the democratic struggles of every section of the people.
58. But this cannot be done without challenging the defensive outlook spread by reformist and reactionary trade unions as well as other organisations in the name of “difficult situation” and “period of defensive struggle”. Dialectically there is an element of offence in every defence, and vice versa. The working masses should be enlightened on the fact that the new onslaughts by capital actually stem from capital’s weakness, its grave problems, not its strength, and therefore now is the time to strike hard. Now is the time when a broad, militant unity of toilers can generate a heroic resistance, mobilise new allies from the non-proletarian strata and bring the day of ultimate victory nearer – to instill this confidence among the masses is a foremost duty of the most advanced class.
59. To raise the working class to this higher political consciousness and role is the duty of its advanced revolutionary detachment, the Communist Party. But developing political consciousness does not consist in trying to artificially impose some sort of activism from above or impart political education in an abstract way. It demands above all that we should help the working class, in course of meeting its real life challenges, gradually raise its self consciousness – the consciousness of the historic mission of overthrowing the rule of capital. To this end our trade union centre must expand its political role – e.g., solidarity action in support of workers’, peasants’, women’s struggles – and the party committees in industrial areas must move beyond phrases like ‘politicisation of working class’ and develop in practice a down-to-earth work style combining factory/industry-based and area-wise political activities and party building, with all our mass organisations also pressed into service.
60. In terms of ideological thrust the party should, while guiding and strengthening trade union work, resolutely combat the tendency, well entrenched in the left movement, of reducing the working class movement to mere trade union struggle. “Trade unionist politics of the working class are precisely bourgeois politics of the working class”, wrote Lenin in a chapter significantly titled “The working class as vanguard fighter for democracy” in the classic “What Is to Be Done?”. What he stressed was the conscious element – revolutionary politics and party building.The more widespread the spontaneity of mass movement, he asserted, the greater must be the conscious role of communists in theoretical, political and organisational terms. In the increasingly turbulent national and international situation, the revolutionary party of the working classmust uphold this Leninist teaching in real earnest.
Workers in Emerging Sectors