Saturday, May 16, 2015

Editorial, A FIGHTING AND FESTIVE DAY, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 May 2015, Vol. 11, Part 1, No. 9 issue


No words suffice to hail this historic day of working class struggles, full of sacrifices and ordeals, that gradually led to each and every human right we the masses in its posterity enjoy today in international and domestic law spheres. The heroic martyrs of Chicago Engel, Fischer, Parsons, and Spies – who were hanged or rather ‘strangled to death slowly’ on the gallows, who fearlessly swung singing the Marseillaise, the then international revolutionary anthem, and Lingg who preceded them by suicide, can never be forgotten and indeed it did eventually happen as Spies was reported to have shouted in his last moments, “The time will come when our silence will be more powerful than the voices you strangle today.” Their sacrifices for the movement demanding eight-hours working day have not gone in vain and in every civilized country of the world it has become a norm, and often also a rule, and further shortening of the working day as also declaration of a longer weekend holidays have been progressing due to the concerted agitations of the toiling masses on whose labor and creative talents this entire modern economy is, and is being, built to ever majestic proportions. The resolution of the International Social Democratic Congress 1904 at Amsterdam declared: “The International Socialist Congress in Amsterdam calls upon all Social-Democratic Party organizations and trade unions of all countries to demonstrate energetically on May First for the legal establishment of the 8-hour day, for the class demands of the proletariat, and for universal peace. The most effective way of demonstrating on May First is by stoppage of work. The Congress therefore makes it mandatory upon the proletarian organizations of all countries to stop work on May First, wherever it is possible without injury to the workers.” And this was to be a step in the struggle for empowerment of the masses everywhere. So, it is very apt and essential that 1 May be and is celebrated the world over as the international working day – as a day of liberation, of festivity and of struggle of the masses. Thereafter, in course of time, the May Day has been declared a public holiday in several countries and in our country too; but, unfortunately, our Courts, which still seem to be steeped in the mire of feudal culture in this matter, neglect this historic occasion deliberately though they so easily shut themselves down on many an undeserving occasion. Well, eppur si muove §§§

Editorial, AN INTERNATIONAL INQUIRY, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 30 April 2015, Vol. 11, Part 1, No. 8 issue.

Editorial, ENCOUNTERS AGAIN, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 April 2015, Vol. 11, Part 1, No. 7 issue.

Editorial, WISHING AND WAITING FOR A NEW DAWN, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15-31 March 2015 Martyrs Memorial Special issue.


That is what many of us have been doing ever since independence, especially since the turbulent sixties. This new dawn symbolism could be interpreted in two ways. One would be to see the entire decades since the ‘transfer of power’ as a long dark night belying the aims and aspirations of innumerable martyrs of our freedom struggle and leaving but travails and tears for the people – still waiting for a new dawn that could bring in the much needed libertarian, welfarist sunlight. Another way of looking at could be that several dawns have come and gone by ever since but that we fondly dreamt of has eluded us so far. One set of rulers has come and gone,  giving way to another, which meant not much in practical terms. Mannerisms and wordings may have changed, even radical democratic ethos oriented ideologies, laws and schemes might have come up, but yet real progress has not been made. A simple illustration would be of the so-called ‘radical and innovative’ Right to Information Act. Some good might have come about due to it in some places and times, but also many loopholes there for the authorities to avoid giving the needed information and make the process more costly and cumbersome for the people. Perhaps the good old method of petitioning to the public authorities, if buttressed by strong and quick judicial monitoring, could be more handy, inexpensive and beneficial to the people at large. Also we see the power and aura of mammon overwhelming almost all sections of society like a Macbethian tormenting spirit. The present get-rich-quick-by-any-means trend is spelling doom to all the grand dreams of a glorious egalitarian society based on the mutual aid of a basically good-natured, well meaning citizenry. We see the basic needs of common people starkly neglected and the remedial mechanisms including courts reduced to more and more sloth and inefficiency. The new surge of free market economy generating an atmosphere of extreme alienation and misery among the people is ruining all chances of humane social progress. The only remedy is for the executive and judiciary, with the motto – small is beautiful and simple is workable – to feel and act as real public servants and not like lords divine/secular. Only when they begin to use public transport, live in duly alloted quarters and conduct on-the-spot enquiries often instead of closing their eyes and ears to the pleas of the common man,  in a word return to the practice of ‘high thinking and plain living’, can they even think of rooting out the societal ills and it is the duty and task of we the people to make for such an eventuality by our concerted efforts and agitations, and usher in the fresh sunrise.  §§§