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Monday, April 30, 2012

MAY DAY & RED FLAG


May Day or International Workers' Day 
&
The Communist Red Flag

  May Day also known as Labour Day or International Workers' Day celebrated every year on 1st May. This day is a national holiday in more than 80 countries and also celebrated unofficially in many other countries.
 In 1886 in Chicago, USA the Red flag was flown at a May Day rally for an eight-hour workday. May Day is celebrated to pay tribute to the contributions, workers have made to make the world strong and prosper. This day is dedicated to the workers for their economic and social achievements. The red flag achieved international recognition during the Soviet Revolution of 1917.  
 Red flag is a symbol of Communism. It has been associated globally with left-wing politics since the French Revolution. The flag of the Paris Commune of 1871 was red.
 "The Red Flag"
The people's flag is deepest red,
It shrouded oft our martyred dead,
And ere their limbs grew stiff and cold,
Their hearts blood dyed its every fold.
Then raise the scarlet standard high.  (chorus)
 
Within its shade we'll live and die,
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer,
We'll keep the red flag flying here.
Look round, the Frenchman loves its blaze,
The sturdy German chants its praise,
In Moscow's vaults its hymns are sung
Chicago swells the surging throng.
 
The lyrics of the song were written by Irishman Jim Connell in 1889

At the Fifth Congress of the Communist International held in Moscow in June-July 1924, the Proletarian Organisations of Moscow presented a gold embroidered Red Flag to the Indian working classes as a token of revolutionary unity.  


The Communist Party of India (CPI) is the second oldest political organization, live in India. According to late Musaffar Ahmed, one of the veterans and chronicler of the communist movement in India, the party was formed at Tashkent, Uzbekistan, by the Indian revolutionaries who were migrated in Europe.  It was affiliated with the Communist International in 1921.  But the official version of CPI records, the party took off its wing on 27 December 1925 in Kanpur, where the first Indian Communist Conference conveyed by late Satya Bhakta of U.P. and held under the president ship of Singaravelu Chettiyar of Madras.  The political observers say that the party has maintained a love-hate relationship with the Congress party right from its inception. The communist movement in India also has been troubled with many a splits.

 On 1 May 1923, Singaravelu Chettiyar  (also spelled as Singaravelar Chettiar, 1860 – 1946), described as the Godfather of Indian Labour, founded the Labour Kishan Party of Hindusthan in Madras. The foundation ceremony of the party was held on the May Day, also observed for the first time in India as the International Workers’ Day. On that occasion for the first time the Red Flag was flown in India.


 
Since the foundation in 1919 the Communist Party of India upheld the Red flag in all its political programmes. M.N. Roy born Narendra Nath Bhattacharya (1887- 1954) was an Indian nationalist revolutionary and an internationally known radical activist and political theorist. Roy was a founder of the Communist Parties in both Mexico and India and was a delegate to congresses of the Communist International. Following the rise of Joseph Stalin, Roy left the mainline communist movement to pursue an independent radical politics. In 1940 Roy was instrumental in the formation of the Radical Democratic Party, an organization in which he played a leading role for much of the decade of the 1940s. Roy later moved away from Marxism to become an exponent of the philosophy of Radical Humanism.(Source : Wikipedia)
 May 1st is historically a holiday declared in honour of workers and labour rights. Although May Day started in The United States, its observance in the US is notably absent.  In America  the first Monday in September celebrated  as “Labor Day". ( source: http://globetribune.info/2011/09/05/labor-day-vs-may-day/)
 

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