Jun 30 2011
Till date I have never participated in a protest for a social cause or civil injustice. At times I think that this is something just up my alley and at times I think that I would not have the guts to follow through on it. Either way I have never had the chance to do so for the aforementioned two scenarios. But I have been part of a protest related to work.
Back in 2002 I joined a company called Aysha Infotech in Calicut. It was supposed to be a BPO and post training of 45 days we were supposed to get down straight to work. Things didn’t work out the way they planned and the training went on for 3 months. They had a lot of financial problems and their planning was not proper and things were in shambles. They kept promising us our salaries and we were getting impatient. From a staff of a 100 it soon dwindled down to 60.
After weeks of promising us our pay, we finally lost our cool. On a day when bank officials and upper management were supposed to come down to visit the office and talks of a huge loan were being discussed, we staged a protest and a strike. The 60 of us all took chairs to the front of the building and sat there in full view of anyone who happened to pass by on the roads. We chatted, we sang songs and we joked. We refused to budge until our demands were met – simple demands of 2 months salary after 7 months of being loyal to that company. The management tried pleading, tried reasoning and when those two failed they tried threatening us. No go, no way Jose! We refused to behave and co-operate.
Finally after promises that we would get our deferred salary before the day ended, we took the chairs back in just before the visitors arrived and we were model employees ad behaved. That evening we got paid as promised! Shows you what a little civil disobedience can do!