Saravana Guru Balraj, executive committee member of NDLF passed away on 29th Jun due to heart attack(2nd attack) and our union has lost the major pillar who build the union to this level. He had a severe heart attack on Saturday night and collapsed to death before taking to hospital. He was working for Tata consultancy services and he is one of the very active members of our NDLF Group.
Last Month, Quora website called Key contributors/writers in Tamilnadu who have answered queries posted by their viewers that has maximum views against different topics and to discuss on quora reach in Tamilnadu and ways to improvise. There are around 25+ key people in Tamilnadu who attended the event on June 2, 2019. Quora arranged a general meeting conference in semmozhi poonga and interaction among these key people has happened. This session is organized in Chennai and Comrade Saravana Guru is one among the 25+ Key people who were invited by Quora for the conference session.
Saravana Guru answered more than 554 queries in English and 261 in Tamil and it is viewed by more than 1.1 million viewers in Quora. In his participation, He ironically questioned about Quora’s double standards in saying NO to politics and Union presence in Quora was felt because of his key contribution. He naturally raised queries on Quora’s Usage, content accountability, Content revision, and its funding model. He voiced his opinion about Quora using the content and creativity of Writer as Quora’s Copyrighted version. He added that “Quora is using NDLF Union articles for its growth and Hence the reverse.” It is to be noted that Many of the persons in quora meet were from writers family background.
There are various great writers, poets who has contributed to Tamil Literature but U.V Swaminathan is called as Tamil Thatha (Grandfather of great Tamil Language). The reason behind this credit is U.V.Swaminathan is responsible for making the outside world know many of the great Tamil literature. He spends most of his lifetime in getting many long-forgotten works of classic Tamil Literature.
There are various issues faced by IT employees that include layoff issues, long stretch working hours, various issues faced by BPO industry and the main problem for all the issue is there is no awareness among IT employees on any of the labor laws. To build this awareness, group of NDLF members started contributing awareness articles in our new-democrats website. But many of these articles miss central attention and has very fewer views among IT employees. When we are discussing on union meeting on how to overcome this issue, Saravana Guru suggested using a various website like Quora to create this awareness to the outside world. He has taken the responsibility of creating this awareness along with Kasirajan who is our Vice-president and started answering various queries posted against layoff. His answers attain maximum user reach and even now Saravana Guru has top views among the topic Layoff as on the current date. The articles on layoff have a very limited audience and this is not a hot topic like cinema or politics where we can retain maximum views easily. Saravana Guru did this for NDLF and in short span, he made this significant achievement of creating this awareness among IT employees.
In addition to Quora, he has taken various videos to promote this awareness among IT employees. He is also worked on conducting live question and answer sessions in the FB page to increase this awareness. He played a very vital role in spreading awareness among IT employees.
Saravana Guru read lot of books and his father from political background, suggested to get himself involved in active politics. He is not interested as his father’s Path since his interest is in communism, equality, and voice for the oppressed. He involved himself in helping fellow employees in all crisis situation. If there are any event conducted by NDLF in the past like NEET Opposition, Sterile Protest, Farmer issue, Yamaha Royal Enfield MSA Strike participation, Gaja relief initiated by NDLF – Saravana Guru front run all these work.
We are discussing many times about the issue faced by IT union as even we created much awareness, IT employees are still not showing any resistance and lost their jobs falling prey to management tactics. There are a lot of hesitant among IT employees to join any union even in the current circumstances. There is Tamil movie named Joker directed by Vel Murugan and many times we compare ourselves with the characters in the movie. We get upset that outside world project union members as jokers in the movie. The smiley reply from Saravana Guru to this concern is to write more and more articles and create more awareness.
“Our awareness is for the people in need and to the people who lack clarity to fight back!”
“We will do our duty to educate let them do their role”
These articles are treasures and definitely, the outside world will recognize this at later point of time. These articles are the only reference for the next generation to resist themselves from various issues they faced and the IT sector. So he suggested writing more and more articles to overcome this negative thought of calling ourselves Jokers. We will be taking with many terminated people and feeling pressure on negativity. He suggested many times that we should not take issues into our mind and it affect our family members that are dependent on us.
Saravana Guru is not only active in NDLF but as part of other groups of people who helped people went for jobs in Arab Nationals and cheated by agents without proper visa and salary. He traveled many times to Chennai Airport to receive them, help them in providing counselling to overcome the financial and family pressure that situation created and helped them to travel to their native places from Chennai. He has written a series of article on creating awareness on issues faced by people who go for foreign nation jobs in our website.
He raised his opposition whenever he sees an issue and stood strong against those issues. He has released many voice messages to express his views on various concerns on IT employees. His last audio released is about variable pay issue faced by some of the senior employees in TCS and he suggested union members to write their views on concerns about variable pay issues. His voice is unforgettable to many of us and we missed Saravana Guru a lot at this stage.
When his body is taken for the last journey, his family kept few of his dresses in the funeral box before it is buried. He has taken an initiative of printing NDLF logo caps for NDLF members among other union members. The cap was kept near his head along with his body before it was buried.
It is a very big loss for all of us who know Saravana Guru. We pray for Saravana Guru Family and his 3 year old little son to overcome this huge loss. We still remember Saravana Guru words that the awareness created will be used by later generation when they face crisis and continue to build that. Saravana Guru might be no more but awareness he created so far will last forever and he is living through that awareness created.
President – NDLF IT Employees Wing