Historic May Day to be observed Monday

May Day is to be celebrated in the country tomorrow on 1 May.File photo

The historic May Day will be observed in Bangladesh on Monday as elsewhere across the world with due respect.

May Day, also known as the International Workers' Solidarity Day, commemorates the historic uprising of working people in Chicago, USA at the height of a prolonged fight for an eight-hour workday in the late nineteenth century.

The day is a public holiday in Bangladesh.

This year, the theme of the day in Bangladesh is "Sramik-Malik oikkya gori smart Bangladesh gore tuli,'' (roughly translated reads: 'Build workers-employers unity, build smart Bangladesh’).

Newspapers will publish supplements while radio and television channels will air special programmes highlighting the significance of the day.

Different organizations, political parties chalked out various programmes to observe the day.

On 1 May 1886, 10 workers were killed when police opened fire on a demonstration in the US city of Chicago near Hay Market demanding an eight-hour working day instead of a 12-hour shift. On the height of agitation, the authorities had to accept the workers' demand and the eight-hour day has been introduced universally.

On 14 July, 1889, an international workers' rally in Paris declared 1 May as the International Workers’ Solidarity Day in recognition of the Chicago workers' sacrifice and achievement and since 1890, the day has been observed globally as the International Workers’ Solidarity Day.

The day has been observed globally as the International Workers’ Solidarity Day since 1890.

President Md Shahabuddin and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina issued separate messages ahead of the day.

The President said the progress of the country's industries and trade needs an investment-friendly environment, workers’ concentration and workers-employers relations.

Through positive participation of workers and employers, stability and productivity in the labour sector will increase, he said.

“I hope that all concerned will play they respective role to improve their standard of living and protect their just rights,” he said.

The prime minister in her message said, “I believe that inspired by the ideals of the great May Day, workers and employers will be dedicated to increase national production by maintaining good relations with each other. We will build a developed and prosperous ‘Sonar Bangladesh’ as dreamt by the Father of the Nation by working for the welfare of working people and the country's overall development.”