National Working Committee Meeting, New Delhi

Indian Social Institute,New Delhi January 17, 2009

The meeting began with welcoming of members by J John of National Secretariat of SSN. Thereafter R S Tiwari reported activities of SSN since last meeting held at Allahabad on August 9, 2008. The activities of SSN during last five months focused on i. Lobbying with the government, MPs, Political parties and others. ii. The Production of campaign song Ye Kaisi Azadi Hai’ and iii. National Campaign Activities. These include meetings with Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi, MPs, trade unions, submitting concerns of SSN on the diluted government bill and proposing amendments in the government bill; production and distribution of campaign song and video with the support of various organisations, production and distribution of other campaign material; supporting various groups to hold regional conventions/workshops and Yatras etc at Chennai, Jabalpur, Pune, Bhubaneshwar and Yatras in Maharashtra. Working group members and other organisations conducted many other activities including rallies etc and SSN participated and supported them.

The participants presented their perceptions and analysis on the activities of SSN and there was general consensus that despite many gaps we were successful in generating awareness of need of comprehensive social security for unorganised informal workers and made it a national issue. The process which started from October 2006 at National Convention in Nagpur has activated a vary large number of CSOs and organisations of workers to demand comprehensive social security protection. The inadequate and diluted government Bill was opposed vehemently. Participants said that because of SSN they could involve many grass root level organisations and trade unions and thus raising social security issue at wider horizons. However now we need to focus on grass root level campaign and involvement of masses. The communication gap should be looked into. The SSN partners and Working group members need to take more interest on this issue. Besides, sharing responsibility and accountability of the campaign is necessary. It was pointed out that parliamentarians were contacted vary late, many MPs stated that we should have contacted them much earlier.

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