INSURANCE EMPLOYEES’ ASSOCIATION INDIA
To all the Zonal/Divisional/State/Regional Units:
NEW YEAR 2012
The Year 2011 has passed into history and a new year has dawned. We welcome the New Year with the hope that 2012 would bring some relief to the life and living of the working and toiling people across the world. It is with this hope that we wish the insurance employees and the working class across the world a very happy and purposeful New Year.
While we look to the New Year with hope and expectation, it is necessary to briefly re-capture the events of the year gone by that shaped the struggle of humanity for a better life. The year that passed-by was the most difficult year for the global working class in the recent times. The cyclical crisis of capitalism that surfaced in the end of 2007 further deepened in the
and advanced developed countries. The other parts of the world could not remain unaffected. The 2008 banking crisis turned into a full blown crisis of sovereign debt with many European nations unable to pay back their debts and consequently face threats of bankruptcy. The enormity of this crisis has raised doubts over the very survival of the European Union. The economy of the United States is in deep trouble with unemployment rates at historical high. There is a widespread belief that the capitalist world is sinking into a crisis that could be as worst as the Great Depression. United States
The capitalist countries are trying to overcome the crisis through unprecedented attacks on the living standards of the people. Millions of jobs are cut, social security benefits curtailed and even Medicare schemes are attacked. The working class did not take these attacks lying down. The year saw working class uniting and resisting the attacks on their life and living. The
witnessed and continues to witness one of the most militant resistance by the people against the economic and social deprivation. The Occupy Wall Street Movement has clearly stated that 99% cannot continue to be exploited and this movement has inspired hundreds of such movements in almost all developed countries. United States Europe has virtually become a battle field. Working class actions and strikes have rocked Greece, Spain, Portugal, UK, France and in the recent period. The unity and struggles of the working class has raised the prospects of a real challenge to the exploitative social order that has spawned unprecedented inequalities. The Middle East and Italy North Africa witnessed brave struggles by the people for democracy and against the authoritarian regimes supported by imperialism.
The Indian politics and economy have sunk into a deep crisis in the year 2011. The failure of the UPA II government was seen in every aspect of governance. Inflation raged and the government showed no political will to tame this menace. The economy is tottering. Industrial production has shown a negative growth. Agriculture is in real distress with farming community in unimaginable difficulties. Unemployment continued to increase giving rise to social tensions. The nation was rocked by massive scams forcing a number of Ministers and Corporate bigwigs to cool their heels in jails. The major opposition party BJP did not lag behind. Its government in Karnataka broke all records in corruption forcing the Chief Minister to step down. These scams have thoroughly exposed the unholy nexus between the bureaucrats, politicians and corporate sector. The scams have also shown that the major contributor to the rise of corruption is neo-liberalism. Today there are movements seemingly at war against corruption while totally embracing neo-liberalism. Enacting of a law, however strong it may be, cannot bring down corruption without simultaneously fighting the neo-liberal economic policies. Fortunately the year saw working class forge unprecedented unity to fight both corruption and neo-liberalism.
The movement of insurance employees scaled great heights to record significant gains. The government was forced to retreat on the issue of privatization of LIC. The campaign against FDI hike had its effect with the Standing Committee on Finance rejecting the government proposal to increase FDI limits in insurance sector. But it is naïve to believe that the danger on both these counts has disappeared for all times. The government for the time being is forced to retreat and the need is to keep vigilance and step up the campaign. The threat of privatization of GIC and four public sector general insurance companies has become real with the recommendation of the Standing Committee. The campaign on this issue has to be further intensified.
The year 2011 was eventful and crisis ridden. The working class was under constant attack across the globe. But from the womb of 2011 the signs of a strong and unified movement of the working class against the capitalist exploitation have strongly emerged. This unity and resistance are surely bound to gather strength in 2012 posing a serious challenge to the exploitative social system. The signs of such a struggle are also seen in
. There is wide spread dissatisfaction over the neo-liberal policies and people are uniting to resist these policies. The trade unions in the country with different political affiliations have joined together to call for a nationwide strike on 28th February 2012 against the attacks on the working and living conditions of the people as also to save the national economy. This strike is expected to herald the beginning of a sustained struggle against neo-liberalism in India . India
There are enough indications that 2012 would be a year of unity of the working class. The year 2012 is bound to witness increasing struggles of the working class globally. It will be a year that would seriously test the resilience of capitalism. It will be a year that would throw up alternatives to capitalism through the struggles of the working class. Let us, therefore, welcome the year 2012 with confidence and courage.
Insurance Employees’ Association wishes the insurance employees and their families and the entire working fraternity a happy, purposeful and eventful year 2012. India
With warm greetings,