Thursday, March 12, 2015

(Affiliated to National Federation of Postal Employees)
Central Headquarters 30/3D, P&T Quarters, Kali Bari Marg
                                              New Delhi- 110001
                              No. AU/ORG-1/AISBCOEA/AIC/2015 dated 12.03.2015
Dear comrade Virendra Tewari Ji,
I cannot proceed for attending your 3rd biennial All India Conference from 14-03-2015 to 15-03-2015 at Kumily, Thekaddy, Kerala-reasons I have already explained earlier.
           In many historical movements your SBCO Comrades have drawn the attention as an wing of our Federation and now it has become a very strong organization of the NFPE for leading the voice of the SBCO people. With the gradual passing of times and with the torch bearing phases, your union has been able to make an indelible footprint in the minds of the workers for achieving better pay scales etc. Definitely, it is an wonderful organization which has been participating for long in the belligerent struggle of our National Federation of Postal Employees and thus, your organization is a formidable component to reckon with, as it has been able to create a denting impression in the mindset of the postal workers in particular and other central govt. employees in general.

          In these days of adoption of new liberal policies, you are also struggling for the existence. In one way the policy matter of the Govt. of India in the shape of privatization, outsourcing of postal services and drastic reduction of staff strength in all the segments of Dept. of Posts including SBCO, are agitating our minds and on the other hand technological upgradation for better services to the customers is a promise to be fulfilled and in the midst of all such things, we are to eke out our existence day to day for the safety and security of our staff as well as to draw the planning for the development of postal services to the people of India.
        While, we are not against the application of modern technology, Indigenous technology soothing to the socio-economic condition of our country, should be our priority. We require highly skilled human capital of knowledge to play decisive role to strengthening our vibrant economy, yet we can not deny that we have to transform our huge human resources- who are unemployed in many many crores, into an indispensable asset of our country. Highly skilled jobs at the top, are definitely growing but what about the general nature of jobs supposed to be performed by our vast stretch of highly educated unemployed youths? They are the most important component for the middle class people. Definitely, in these days of tumultuous crisis and new liberal policies, the existence of the working class is under severe threat when every one is feeling the pinch.
       In your field also, the "Core Banking System" ,being a full fledged technological step, needs to be properly reviewed, as what would be the role of the SBCO employees after the CBS, has strangely not yet been defined. Whether infrastructure has properly been revamped before the introduction of Core Banking System, is a big question mark.

       We are observing that low paying jobs, that can not be easily computerized, have continued to grow. Hundreds and hundreds of educated DRMs and casual labors culminating into many thousands, are working hand in hand to increase the productivity of our department at the cost of  a poor and lumpsum amount, indicating the worst kind of exploitation in our department, which is really a great shocking phenomenon for us. How can we avoid those poor fellows? Isn't it a colossal waste of human resources? Not allowing the citizens to develop their full potential means, not help them to come out of poverty- is a matter of serious concern. So is the case of more than 2 lakh of  Gramin Dak Sevaks, who are also fighting for justice. For all of them, our NFPE is playing a leading role.
        Our experience regarding our own department is not at all good. In 1991, we had an workforce of 7,02,000 appx. to serve our 85 crore of people. Now in 2014-15 with the population increased to more that 125 crores means, for an increase over 40 crores of people for the last 24 years, our staff strength stands at 4,66,301. The same is the case with the banks, railways, insurances and other sectors. However, our satisfaction is that in spite of all such odds in Postal Sector through the constant struggle in different phases since 2009 to 2014, we have been able to fill up some thousands of posts in different segments of the Department of Posts under the leadership of our mighty National Federation of Postal Employees.  
       Without complete and full fledged technology, such drastic reduction in staff strength with the increase in population, gives a serious warning signal to our country, where educated youths numbering nearly 2 crore students per year, are enrolling their names in the colleges and universities for higher education  and becoming job seekers after a span of 2-3 years. In the context of this peculiar situation, the policies which are being followed in our country, are making working population squeezed in two ways: 1) through declining job opportunities and 2) through stagnant real wages at the subsistence level.

            Moreover, how can we forget, “In a strongly technology based culture, there will always be a dichotomy between those who understand its workings and those who merely press the buttons. It is, ofcourse, not necessary to understand electronic theory in order to enjoy television. But when the use of the microprocessor spreads to make ‘black boxes’ out of nearly all the equipment and artifacts of life, the sophisticated know-how of the few, who invent and design the new machines and create the software will have soared beyond the comprehension of the majority. Then we may face with a sharp distinction between the minority who know and the majority who do not know. The emergence of a priesthood of scientists, technologists and technocrats is hardly desirable, and its prevention must be one of the objectives of technological educational reform.”
What is happening in U.K., U.S.A., France, Germany, Malaysia etc. in respect of transformation, cannot be applied in Indian Socio-economic context, as we feel that "one size fits for all" has no relevance.
        The destiny of a nation, is built upon the character of its citizens which is largely shaped by education. But unfortunately, in spite of having adequate education, such youth power are not getting jobs in Central Govt, Banking, Insurance and other Govt and under taking sectors, no job is being created and in many cases many vacancies are not filled up and thus, the existence of  the educated youths by means of getting jobs, is under threat. The role of education cannot be over emphasized in a country like India, where it is the one of the fundamental instruments for fostering national integrity and harmony.

       Our children over burdened with heavy dose of syllabus and higher degrees will not be effective if they are not properly trained with updated knowledge whereas such education and training have become very expensive in these days of Market Economy. Notwithstanding bearing of such huge expenditure, most of them are not getting proper employment.
       In such a socio-economic scenario, we must have to strive for an appropriate technology, so that the technology emerges for a better tomorrow. Changes will be viewed positively only, if it visibly improves the daily life of average Indian. In a country like India , it must be dedicated to ending poverty and stagnation. It must focus on Housing, Hygiene, Clothing, Providing drinking water, Crop management and Health Care and above all, it must result in expanding meaningful employment for the mass of our people. 
       I hope that the delegates coming from all over the country in this conference will discuss the problems confronted by your people and take dispassionate views on all the glaring issues for a better and improved future.
I wish the conference a great success.
Thanking you,
With comradely greetings,

P. Bhattacharjee
General Secretary    

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