Like every year, the first day of May is celebrated as International Labour Day. May Day, as it is popularly known, is celebrated for workers and labourers. It is considered as a holiday in many countries and in India, it is known as Antarrashtriya Shramik Diwas or Kamgar Din. Today, Google celebrated the event in its usual style – Doodles.
Google’s doodle is purple coloured and has illustrations of rubber gloves, helmets, stethoscopes, glasses, a spade, a torch, boots, a measuring tape and several other equipment used by labourers.
Labour Day originates in the late 19th century when trade unions and labour movements began growing in the US. With the rise of industrialization, the labour class was exploited and often had to work for 15 hours a day. The workers finally raised their voice against the oppression and demanded paid leaves and better wages. Each country has its own story behind Labour Day.
In the US, on May 4, 1886, a rally was ongoing in Chicago in support of workers who were striking for an eight hour work day and also protesting the killings of a number of workers by the police. An unidentified person threw a bomb at the police, leading to gunfire and the death of policemen and four civilians. This incident is known as the Haymarket affair or the Haymarket Massacre, named after the area where the incident occurred. In 1992, the location was designated as a landmark for Chicago.
The first celebrations of Labour Day in India were in 1923 when the Labour Kisan Party had organized May Day celebrations in Madras. Celebrations were held at the Triplicane Beach and also at the beach opposite Madras High Court.