International Worker’s day or International Labor Day is also popularly called May day. On 1st May every year this day is celebrated to honor workers, employees and professionals who work throughout the year for economic and social benefits of common people in their respective countries. Presently, May Day is observed in almost 80 different countries all over the world including India.
International Workers’ Day or May Day is the remembrance of the Hay market Massacre in Chicago in 1886, when police in Chicago open fired on workers during a general strike on demand of eight hour workday. That open fire by police killed several demonstrating workers and also some police officers. In 1889, it was decided that this famous Chicago demonstration would be celebrated every year as an International Labor day through a proposal by the Raymond Lavigne in Paris. Later, in 1891, May Day was formally accepted by the International’s second congress to be observed as an annual event in all the participating countries.
Importance of May Day
International worker’s Day is celebrated to observe labor movement on demand of labor rights including their struggle for the requirement of eight-hour work day and specific holidays for the labors. At that time the working environment of the laborers in different factories were too pathetic and they were forced to work for about 12 to 16 hours a day at a stretch, there was no holidays and in many occasions workers had to work in very risky condition. Illness, deaths, injuries and other horrible circumstances of the workers were very common at the workplace. But at last, workers agitation got acceptance and what the workers and other professionals enjoy today are due to those workers’ struggle and sacrifice for their rights at that time.
How the day is celebrated
The day is primarily observed by declaring official holiday in all the countries where the day is officially observed. Working class and other professionals celebrate the day by arranging parties and programs. Labor unions and political parties also arrange programs and cultural shows to commemorate the day. In television and radio channels different programs like movies, plays, recitations and storytelling etc. are arranged, and eminent scholars and celebrities are invited to voice their opinions
In every year a specific theme is fixed for International Worker’s Day and this year the theme is “Celebrating International Labor Movement”. International Worker’s Day 2016 is fixed to honor each and every workers and professionals who are relentlessly engaged in their respective jobs to make their organizations and countries highly prosperous and economically strong.