Corporate culture is eating out human capital and labour rights in India: Noor Zaheer
Lahore: “Corporate culture and laws are crushing human rights and labour rights in India and state institutions and labour courts are not up to the mark to provide protection to poor against brutal contract system. We have an example n India that is on-going strike of labour belonging to trade union of Maruti-Sazuki India. This strike of around 4,500 workers is continued for the last one year although stiff laws had been used to disband this strike after July 2012 violence in the factory and most of leaders are in jail”.
This was said by Noo Zaheer of Communist Party of India (CPI) while addressing ceremony of her book here at Lahore on January 18. The event was arranged by SAFMA Pakistan. Raait Per Khoon ( The Blood on Sand) is her latest work published in Pakistan.
She explained that trade unions in India are also decaying and Corporate sector and globalization is eating out labour rights. She accepted that CPI and other communist forums have failed to enhance their reach in masses because these forums did not open them up according to changing demands of time and era. She believed that Corporate laws are crushing human rights, labour rights and workers. She is against disparity in mimimum wages of different countries of South Asia and believes that this difference is being exploited by investors who are moving around their capital for finding cheaper labour and minimsing their cost of production.
Commenting on development of Urdu language and literature in India, she said:
“There is a lot of work going on in India regarding development of Urdu and there would a writer’s festival in October 2014 where more work of Urdu writers will be showcased”.
Noor Zaheer is an environmentalist, writer, poet, activist from India and writing in English, Hindi and Urdu since long. She had been a practiciisning journalist in past. Noor wields a strong feminist pen. Her important books include My God is a Woman [Foundation of SAARC Writers Literary Award], Mere Hisse ki Roshnai [Delhi Hindi Academy Award], Barh Urraiyye, Ret Par Khoon [fiction, Aaj ke Naam, a biography of well known Urdu poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Surkh Karavan ke Hamsafar, a travelogue of Pakistan and Patthar ke Sainik, plays for children.
She is a popular leader of Communist Party of India (CPI) and daughter of famous communist of India and Pakistan—Sajjad Zaheer. He was one of the founding members of the Communist Party of India and later in 1948, the Communist Party of Pakistan, along with Faiz Ahmad Faiz. Both were later jailed in Rawalpindi Conspiracy Case along with Mohammad Husain Ata, Zafarullah Poshni and others. Major General Akbar Khan was allegedly the main conspirator. He was extradited to India in 1954 and revived his activities in the country through Progressive Writers’ Association, Indian People’s Theatre Association (IPTA) and Afro-Asian Writers’ Association. Sajjad Zaheer was also a founder and leading figure of the three associations. 2005 was observed as his birth centenary year.
Deeply involved in writing for stage, she is an active translator and editor and has translated Peter Shaffer’s “Royal Hunt of the Sun” and Tennessee Williams’ “A Street Car Named Desire” to Urdu for legendary theatre director Ebrahim Alkazi; adapted M.F.Husain’s autobiography for stage for Nadira Babbar and Shakespeare’s “Titus Andronicus” for National School of Drama. Noor Zaheer has done intensive research work in the Himalayas on Buddhist Performance traditions and Oral Tribal literature. The book on this research “The Dancing Lama” is under publication. Noor Zaheer has received the Times Fellowship, Senior Fellowship of the Culture Ministry, Govt. of India and Writer in Residence, Sahitya Academy. At present she is translating early women writing in Urdu to English for Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts. She was Director of the SAARC Festival of Literature, held in Agra on March 10,11,12, 2013