By Harsh Thakor
On the International Women’s day, Bharti Kisan Union(Ekta Ugrahan) staged massive women conferences at 11places in 10 districts of Punjab, in which tens of thousands of women participated. State president of the Union, Joginder Singh Ugrahan and General Secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokri Kalan informed the press that at all these places the Conferences were organised and led on the initiative of women themselves.
Possibly over 50000 women participated as a whole in the conferences, turning a spark into prairie fire. Intensity of women simmered at a boiling pint against the wrath of the opressors. It was a tribute to the revolutionary democratic movement undertaken by the BKU(Ekta)Ugrahan’s dedication and consistency, witnessing the flowering of women’s anti-imperialist and anti-feudal consciousness ,making them an integral part of the overall people’s movement. In a most qualitative manner the women’s organisation of BKU (Ugrahan) has de-centralised. Most elaborately the speakers summarised the link between the misery of women and the feudal-imperialist socio-economic system and how it was imperative to launch sustained struggles, including those of other sections. Notewothy that it was organised on the very own initiative by women. The trail of the Delhi border women’s resistance in farmers protest against farm bills is continuing, which is heartening. Positive that it also gained support from industrial workers, agricultural workers, teachers and govt.employees.
The gatherings at various conferences have been addressed by the Women farmers leaders including Harinder Kaur Bindu, Kuldip Kaur Kussa, Harprit Kaur Jethuke, Paramjit Kaur Pitho, Gurpreet kaur Brass, ਕਮਲ Barnala, Paramjit Kaur Kotra and Bachittar Kaur Talwandi
Speakers said that under the present exploitative system, women in addition to being subjugated by exploitation and suppression of the Feudalistic – Imperialist system are living under dual exploitation coupled by the patriarchal power. As a consequence of a divisive society due to communal and castiest divisions, the Dalit women are victims of the third suppression. It is because of the male patriarchal suppression and so called high caste suppression along with the suppression by the supremacy of the exploitative classes.
They said that in recent past the synthesising of mass struggles of farm labour and farmer women gave a boost to the womens right movement.. An environment conducive for dialogue on women empowerment has sprung. While discussing the significant contribution of the farmer and farm labour women during the Historical Kisan struggle against three draconian farm laws, they said that the due to their role in present exemplary struggle and the struggles of the past, even in the farmers families the feudal attitude towards women has significantly subsided.
They said for emancipation of women and social equality the only road is to undertake consistent class struggles. They called out the women to participate more resolutely and join the leadership ranks of class struggles for emancipation of women.
They said that presently the greed for capturing the markets among the imperialist exploiting forces the children and women are suffering innumerable ill effects during the invasion of Ukraine by Russia. They said that the war initiated for exploitative interests of Russian and Ukrainian rulers be stopped immediately.
Women leaders said that feudalistic imperialist suppression has multiplied farm suicides and caused maximum misery to women. They said that the imperialist Multinational corporations and corporate world against whom farmers and the whole of toiling masses have confronted are also inimical to the women. These imperialist Corporates on one hand make gains from the conditions of suppression of women by usurping their labour power, on the other hand profiteer by turning women into a commodity saleable in the bazar. Therefore struggle against corporates is inter linked with the struggle for women right sand the women emancipation movement plays an integral role in the anti imperialist movement.. Along with the struggles for ending the feudal exploitation also are to become the woman emancipation struggles. Thus movement of women rights is part and parcel of the movement of the rights of the farmers labour and mass of the people.
Farmers leaders said that ਕਿਸਾਨ ਯੂਨੀਅਨ has held women conferences one each at grain markets Bathinda, Barnala, Sunam(Sangrur), Bagha Purana (Moga), Puda Ground Patiala, Village Varrhe (Mansa), Village Chakk Rohi Wala (FAZILKA), Village Vara Bhai Ka (Faridkot), Village Gujjarwal (Ludhiana) and two in muktsar at Doda and Killianwali. In these conferences in addition to the farmer women, the women Labour and women employees also participated in large numbers.
We should hope that such conferences can sow the breeding ground to sharpen the general anti-feudal struggles, establish the link with dalit women agricultural labour and industrial workers and link with the overall offensive of anti-fascist movement.
Harsh Thakor is a freelance journalist based in Mumbai.