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Rinku Khumukcham

Rinku Khumukcham

Rinku Khumukcham, Editor of Imphal Times has more than 15+ years in the field of Journalism. A seasoned editor, was a former editor of ISTV News. He resides in Keishamthong Elangbam Leikai, with his wife and parents. Rinku can be contacted at [email protected] 

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May Day (Contd. from yesterday issue)

By :- Sh. Ajit , Khongman.
May Day Born in the United States
The First International ceased to exist as an international organization in 1872, when its headquarters were removed from London to New York, although it was not officially disbanded till 1876. It was at the first congress of the reconstituted International, later known as the Second International, held at Paris in 1889, that May First was set aside as a day upon which the workers of the world, organized in their political parties and trade unions, were to fight for the important political demand: the 8-hour day. The Paris decision was influenced by a decision made at Chicago five years earlier by delegates of a young American labor organization – the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions of the United States and Canada, later known under the abbreviated name, American Federation of Labor. At the Fourth Convention of this organization, October 7, 1884, the following resolution was passed:
Resolved by the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions the United States and Canada, that eight hours shall constitute legal day’s labor from May First, 1886, and that we recommend to labor organizations throughout their jurisdiction that they so direct their laws as to conform to this resolution by the time named.
Although nothing was said in the resolution about the methods by which the Federation expected to establish the 8-hour day, it is self-evident that an organization which at that time commanded an adherence of not more than 50,000 members could not declare “that eight hours shall constitute a legal day’s work” without putting up a fight for it in the shops, mills, and mines where its members were employed, and without attempting to draw into the struggle for the 8-hour day still larger numbers of workers. The provision in the resolution that the unions affiliated to the Federation “so direct their laws as to conform to this resolution” referred to the matter of paying strike benefits to their members who were expected to strike on May First, 1886, for the 8-hour day, and would probably have to stay out long enough to need assistance from the union. As this strike action was to be national in scope and involve all the affiliated organizations, the unions, according to their by-laws, had to secure the endorsement of the strike by their members, particularly since that would involve the expenditure of funds, etc. It must be remembered that the Federation, just as the A. F. of L. today, was organized on a voluntary, federation basis, and decisions of a national convention could be binding upon affiliated unions only if those unions endorsed these decisions.
May Day Becomes International
On July 14, 1889, the hundredth anniversary of the fall of the Bastille, there assembled in Paris leaders from organized revolutionary proletarian movements of many lands, to form once more an international organization of workers, patterned after the one formed 25 years earlier by their great teacher, Karl Marx. Those assembled at the foundation meeting of what was to become the Second International heard from the American delegates about the struggle in America for the 8-hour day during 1884-1886, and the recent rejuvenation of the movement. Inspired by the example of the American workers, the Paris Congress adopted the following resolution:
The Congress decides to organize a great international demonstration, so that in all countries and in all cities on one appointed day the toiling masses shall demand of the state authorities the legal reduction of the working day to eight hours, as well as the carrying out of other decisions of the Paris Congress. Since a similar demonstration has already been decided upon for May 1, 1890, by the American Federation of Labor at its Convention in St. Louis, December, 1888, this day is accepted for the international demonstration. The workers of the various countries must organize this demonstration according to conditions prevailing in each country.
The clause in the resolution which speaks of the organization of the demonstration with regard to the objective conditions prevailing in each country gave some parties, particularly the British movement, an opportunity to interpret the resolution as not mandatory upon all countries. Thus at the very formation of the Second International, there were parties who looked upon it as merely a consultative body, functioning only during Congresses for the exchange of information and opinions, but not as a centralized organization, a revolutionary world proletarian party, such as Marx had tried to make the First International a generation before. When Engels wrote to his friend Serge in 1874, before the First International was officially disbanded in America, “I think that the next International, formed after the teachings of Marx, will have become widely known during the next years, will be a purely Communist International,” he did not foresee that at the very launching of the rejuvenated International there would be present reformist elements who viewed it as a voluntary federation of Socialist parties, independent of each other and each a law unto itself.
But May Day, 1890, was celebrated in many European countries, and in the United States the Carpenters’ Union and other building trades entered into a general strike for the 8-hour day. Despite the Exception Laws against the Socialists, workers in the various German industrial cities celebrated May Day, which was marked by fierce struggles with the police. Similarly in other European capitals demonstrations were held, although the authorities warned against them and the police tried to suppress them. In the United States, the Chicago and New York demonstrations were of particularly great significance. Many thousands paraded the streets in support of the 8-hour day demand; and the demonstrations were closed with great open air mass meetings at central points.
At the next Congress, in Brussels, 1891, the International reiterated the original purpose of May First, to demand the 8-hour day, but added that it must serve also as a demonstration in behalf of the demands to improve working conditions, and to ensure peace among the nations. The revised resolution particularly stressed the importance of the “class character of the May First demonstrations” for the 8-hour day and the other demands which would lead to the “deepening of the class struggle.” The resolution also demanded that work be stopped “wherever possible.” Although the reference to strikes on May First was only conditional, the International began to enlarge upon and concretize the purposes of the demonstrations. The British Laborites again showed their opportunism by refusing to accept even the conditional proposal for a strike on May First, and together with the German Social-Democrats voted to postpone the May Day demonstration to the Sunday following May First.
In this way, Marx, starting from the economy’s most basic unit – the commodity – brings out the nature of the economic laws governing capitalism. He thus exposes the scientific economic basis for the socialist revolution and the road to communism.           (Concluded)

Development and security matters

Northeast India seems to grow in its stature of populism which perhaps is a (alien) perspective that lies in the inherent identity of being a periphery; which is ought to be given due attention for multiple possibilities of fragility embedded. The being of a periphery induces the permanence of the temporaries thereby extensively generating terms and conditions on the nature of requirements, needs, relationships, debates, rights, native mechanism of livelihoods, politics, and cultures of communities in the region. Northeast India, which credited to a colonial praxis, still finds constantly clubbed for political and policy purposes which is an historical instrumentalism of Govern mentality. The populism, fragility, and peripheries provide rationale to differential political praxis. The differential praxis erects a towering thorn in the flesh of the State which is also constantly used to blanket and deny historical contradictions; of fascist State building projects, liberal economic onslaught on the one had; and class and people’s struggle on the other hand. This historical question is a fundamental confrontation that is far beyond a prospective resolution, at least, within the ambit of the given political structures. The lived worlds of Assam and Manipur powerfully indicate to such a situation. This write up argues that the State has widely clubbed the northeast India while responding to the upsurges of people. It also classifies the responses of the Indian State into two important aspects’ militarism in the state building and excessive resorting developmentalism. Interestingly, the two aspects indulge in such a way that it claims to define to safeguard human security. Vertical economic orientation (including dependent economic practice), exploitation of indigenous resources (construction of mega dams and softening borders) are continuing diminishing sites of indigenous societies. Resistances to onslaught of developmentism grow manifold when development becomes a unilateral subject of the State which at the same time is also construed as a means and ways to peace and security. Existing conception of development and security finally gets reduced to construing ‘counter politics’ to dissents (armed/non-armed) and alternatives discourses. Is it possible to interrogate the very nature of development and the way it is linked to human growth and security? Is it the kind of development that the worlds (who have experienced more immediately and directly) have anticipated and though of? If otherwise ; can one suspect an actual need for rethinking/reversing what we have so far been made to belief as development & security?      

Dawn of a new era, declares Nagaland CM, Urges Meiteis to play role of big brother to other ethnic groups in NE

IT News
Imphal, May 9: Nagaland chief minister Shurhozelie Liezietsu announced today that a new era of peace and understanding is dawning in the northeast with the installation of a BJP led government in Manipur and appealed to the Meitei community to play the role of a big brother being the most advanced among different ethnic groups here and serve their younger brothers for their welfare.
Reckoning the tumultuous relation between Nagaland and Manipur in the past, the Nagaland chief minister said the two states have been crisis ridden for some time but with the change in government that period is already over. “We are sorry for some of our leaders in the past who had exploited the situation for their selfish ends and created (bad) feeling among different communities,” he said.
Now, people have seen a new ray of hope and herald the dawn of peace and understanding with the change of government, he stated referring to the new government in Manipur.
Stating that the alliance of BJP and NPF in Nagaland has made good impact in the neibouring state, Leizeitsu further gave assurance of extended support to Manipur chief minister N Biren promising that the four NPF legislators will continue their support till the end.
“I felt it was our victory when the new chief minister took over in Manipur,” said the veteran NPF leader.
Leizeitsu underlined the need for all communities in the northeastern region to foster good relation with one another as they have the same needs and proposed a major role for the Meiteis as the big brother.  He said the major community in Manipur is also the most advanced group in the region. They have many writers and scholars who must come forward and help in creating a peaceful situation, he added.  
On the landmark meeting that thaw the almost frozen relationship between the two states, he said we will interact more and we will see that the relationship is based on solid foundation. In reply to a query he promised that though blockades were common in the past it will now become a thing of the past.
The people in the hills and valley of Manipur should learn to live together and our forefathers were very good neighbors. The Meiteis, Nagas and Kukis must understand that only through peace there will be development, he stated.
On his part Biren said he had held doubt whether he was bound by shared beliefs to make a call on the Nagaland chief minister first as he was younger in age. He clarified that the visit of Liezietsu, TR Zeliang and minister Yitachu was a courtesy call and there were no extra agenda.
The Nagaland chief minister wanted to show his appreciation to the good momentum built up in both hills and valley for cohesive and peaceful existence during the first 40 days of the BJP led government, he claimed.

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Imphal, May 9, 2017 (DIPR): Manipur Chief Minister Shri N. Biren Singh today paid his tribute and placed wreaths on the dead bodies of the two Territorial Army jawans who were martyred in Tengnoupal District yesterday. The solemn wreath laying ceremony conducted in the true traditions of the Indian Armed Forces was held at 165th Territorial Army Company located at Koirengei airfield, Imphal.

Condemning the unfortunate incident in strongest terms, Chief Minister Shri N. Biren Singh said that those martyred soldiers laid down their lives to serve the people as well as the country. 

Honouring the supreme sacrifice made by two valiant soldiers in the line of duty, floral tributes were also paid to the martyred soldiers by DGP, Manipur Shri L.M. Khaute, IGAR (South) Major General Virendra Singh, GOC, 57th Mountain Division, Major General U Suresh Kumar, Dy GOC, 57th Mountain Division, Shri SKS Chauhan, IGP, Manipur, Shri Clay Khongsai and other top Army and police officials.


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