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INDIA: Speech of WFTU General Secretary Pambis Kyritsis at 17th Congress of CITU

The General Secretary WFTU, Pambis Kyritsis took the floor of the 17th Congress of Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) which is taking place on 18-22 January 2023 at the metropolitan city of Bengaluru, India, and addressed the hundreds of delegates and highlighted the importance of the relentless struggles of CITU and the Indian working class, conveying the international support and solidarity of the international class-oriented trade union movement on behalf of the 105 million members of the World Federation of Trade Unions from 133 countries. You can read below the whole WFTU intervention:

Dear comrades, brothers and sisters

On behalf of  more than  105 million members of the World Federation of Trade Unions from 133 countries from all corners of the earth,  I convey to you and through you to the workers of India, militant class greetings

First of all, I would like to thank for the invitation and the possibility  to attend the 17th Triennial  National Conferees of CITU.

I especially thank the President  Hemalata, leadership figure of the Indian, but also the international class oriented labor movement, who we have the honor of being a vice-president of our World Federation and the General Secretary comrade Tapan Cen.

CITU is a valuable member for the WFTU, not only because of the number of members it represents, but also because of its rich and militant history and its stable, anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist orientation. Its joining the WFTU in 2011,  and sent a strong message of hope and perspective in a particularly difficult period for the class-oriented global trade union movement and rightly, CITU has a position in the secretariat of our federation and Comrade Ntev Roye is one of the deputy general secretaries of the WFTU.

Dear comrades, delegates of the 17th Triennial National Conference of CITU.

In now always the world is going through a phase of extreme intensification of political, economic, and military antagonisms, aiming at controlling and exploiting the economic resources of our planet and as always is happening.

The peoples, pay the price of the imperialist wars and interventions.

After the Russian invasion in Ukraine,  the USA, the NATO and the EU they attempt to present the situation as a war between “liberalism” and “authoritarianism”.  Thinking that this way, their own criminal role in the developments can be hushed up.  But  so many bloody  wars and interventions to promote their own selfish imperialistic interests are clearly visible.   Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Yugoslavia, Cyprus and so many other places. Cuba and Venezuela embargos and so many sanctions and economic wars.  Our answer to the hawks who they try to appear as pigeons, is that the world peace is not being protected by even more militarism or patronage of all kinds of far-right nationalists and fascists.  It cannot be based on blockades, sanctions and economic wars.

WFTU is fighting for peace, for an end to this war and to imperialist wars and interventions in generally, for the dissolution of NATO and all military coalitions and for the abolition of nuclear weapons.

The crisis of capitalism it deepens and strengthens, resulting the open violation of democratic and trade union rights and the dramatic widening of social inequalities, poverty, and exploitation.

The sharp and uncontrollable increase in prices of all basic necessities, dissipates the living standard of the working people families at the same time that multinationals and monopolies are reaching new records in profits.

The results of the war of NATO and Russia in Ukraine, attempted to be loaded to the shoulders of the working class.

The workers all over the world refuse to pay for the capitalist crisis and the imperialist wars, through remarkable struggles, strikes and mobilizations, to defend the democratic and trade union freedoms, the collective bargaining and the stable, permanent, and agreements-regulated labor and for the satisfaction of the contemporary needs of the working people. WFTU affiliates are at the forefront of these struggles.   The sharpening of state repression and authoritarianism,   is the response of the bourgeois governments to the just popular demands. Unfortunately with the  intolerance of surrendered trade union leaders  and the cooperation of yellow unions.

The arrest of the Secretary General of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC),  Luca Visentini for a bribe scandal, brings to the surface one more time, the issue of corruption within the Trade Unions.   In this particular case the arrest linked with the cover-up of terrible crimes committed against thousands of workers, many of whom lost their lives during their daily work.

WFTU call the  Trade Unions all over the world  to protect the autonomy and their class orientation, away from bureaucracy, corruption, and manipulation by the capital and employers.   The bribe scandal confirms once again that  the absence of a substantial reaction to the  neo-liberal, anti-labor policies from the side of the reformist Unions, clearly coexists with the corruption and the use of Trade Union positions for opposite purposes to the class interests of the working class.

Dear comrades, brothers and sisters

Concluding my intervention, I would like to wish you every success in the works, of your conference.   Your struggles to defend and expand the rights and improve the quality of life of Indian workers are important not only for you, but also for the workers in Europe, in Africa, in Latin and north America. The attack to the working class gains and rights, it is very hart and is global-wide. The monopolies and multinational giants, while fiercely competing for control of markets and raw materials, at the same time, they are cooperating, on the attack against labor and social rights.

The weapon of the working class is Solidarity and internationalism. For the workers who resist, who do not compromise with oppression, discrimination and exploitation, there is only one path of dignity, the path of the struggles.

Keep going comrades! For the defense of the political, social and Trade Union rights of Indian workers,  with unity and decisiveness and be sure that you can always rely on the solidarity and the support of the international class-oriented trade union movement against capitalist barbarity, for a world free of imperialistic wars and interventions, without any kind of discriminations and man by man exploitation.

  • Long live the working class straggles for peace and social justice
  • Long live CITU and the working class of India
  • Long live the WFTU

Thank you

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