It was indeed a happy and proud moment for the IT professionals of Maharashtra when on 13th January 2018, in a press conference it was declared that their union Forum for I.T. Employees (FITE) has been registered as a union in Maharashtra. Consistent and brave efforts of several IT professionals from Pune over the last six months beginning with a successful meeting organized by FITE and the Maharashtra Council of Lok Raj Sangathan on 8th July 2017 in Pune, finally culminated in getting the union registered.
The press conference was addressed by the committee members of FITE, Maharashtra along with the representative of Lok Raj Sangathan and the President of the union of Bajaj Auto employees.
There is a lot of propaganda wrongly advising IT professionals that they cannot form a union since they are not workers. This falsehood is propagated by the head honchos of the IT Industry as well as by their representative body, NASSCOM. However in the 8th July meeting itself this lie was exposed, and the formal recognition of FITE now sends a clear signal to IT professionals that they are also wage earners and hence just like any citizen of India have a right to form their union.
The IT industry employs almost 4 million IT professionals. Over the last couple of years it has been shedding employees in increasing numbers. The emergence of Artificial Intelligence and various automation techniques is expected to increase competition within the IT industry. To protect their profits, IT companies are expected to shed more and more employees in next couple of years. It is on this background that this union is now registered in Maharashtra. This will surely help the IT professionals to fight for their rights in a more organized way.
Addressing the press conference the President as well as the General Secretary of FITE made it clear that it will take up the task of organizing IT professionals across Maharashtra so that they can unitedly fight for their rights. They also declared their resolve to move towards formation of a federation of IT professionals across India.
The representative of Lok Raj Sangathan congratulated the committee members for their heroic efforts. He also explained that IT professionals are like a sleeping giant who is not aware of his own strength. It is the Indian IT professionals who are performing some of the most critical tasks impacting all the facets of world economy. If even 10% IT professionals from India decide to take mass casual leave on the same day, a huge number of industries across the world and most of its financial markets will come to a stand still. He explained that they need to realize this strength of theirs and fight unitedly with working people across India against injustice.
F.I.T.E is extremely happy to announce that the forum has successfully achieved the status of a legally registered trade union in Maharashtra. We recognize this as a significant moment in the journey to collectivize and represent rights of IT workers in India.
We express our gratitude to the trade unions that have laid the ground for such initiatives and have offered their support and solidarity. We look forward to continuing to work with our allies in the future and aim to strength this solidarity.
F.I.T.E is a collective that works across regions of the country and is in the process of consolidating its efforts. We thank our members and leadership teams and look forward to being registered in multiple states in the near future.
F.I.T.E continues to be a forum for IT employees run by I.T employees. The I.T industry for too long has not had an official body representing the rights and interests of the employees. We remain committed to empowering and supporting employees who currently are at risk of being forced to resign and are working under increasingly stressful conditions.
Finally, we would like to extend our thanks to members of the press for their support. It is extremely crucial to draw attention and expose the darker side of this industry because creates public debate and awareness. We see the role of the media plays are being very important and appreciate the support employees receive.
, President F.I.T.E – Maharashtra
, General Secretary F.I.T.E – Maharashtra