May Day observed in Bangladesh

May Day was observed in Bangladesh on Sunday as elsewhere across the world with due respect.

This year, the theme for this historic day in Bangladesh was “Sramik-Malik Ekota, Unnoyoner Nischoyota” (roughly translated reads: Workers-owners unity, assurance of development).

May Day, also known as the International Workers’ Solidarity Day, commemorates the historic uprising of working people in the US city of Chicago at the height of a prolonged fight for an eight-hour workday in the late nineteenth century.

Officials of the Ministry of Labour and Employment and leaders of different labour unions placed wreaths at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman’s portrait led by State Minister for Labour and Employment Begum Monnujan Sufian in observance of the day.

Monnujan Sufian said, “Bangabandhu was vocal for ensuring the rights of working people and fought for their rights throughout his life. In May ,1972 he recognized May Day as the National Solidarity Day.”

President Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages ahead of the day.

President Hamid called upon all stakeholders to work together to ensure the welfare of the country’s workers.

“In order to survive in today’s competitive world, workers and employers along with the government will need to be more dedicated to maintaining a good relationship to boost production,” the President said.

The Prime Minister in her message said, “Our government has taken all possible measures to tackle the Covid situation, including distribution of relief among the working people to stand beside them.”

She urged all to build a happy, rich and Sonar Bangla as dreamt by Bangabandhu by working for the welfare of the working people and the country.

Newspapers published supplements while radio and television channels aired special programmes highlighting the significance of the day.

Different organisations, political parties arranged dedicated programmes to observe the day.

On May 1, 1886, 10 workers were killed when police opened fire on a demonstration in Chicago near Hay Market demanding an eight-hour working day instead of a 12-hour shift. At the height of agitation, authorities had to accept the workers’ demand and the eight-hour day was introduced universally.

On July 14, 1889, an international workers’ rally in Paris declared May 1 as the International Workers’ Solidarity Day in recognition of the Chicago workers’ sacrifice and achievement and since 1890, the day has been observed globally.

Source: United News of Bangladesh