Maruti Suzuki, the country’s top carmaker, sacked 12 more workers and resumed production at its Manesar plant on Tuesday afternoon, a day after work was halted due to a labour strife over signing of a ‘good conduct bond’. “There has been some production activity and we should be able to scale up in next few days. We are not going to succumb to any pressure and would prefer to roll out cars on our own at the earliest”, chairman RC Bhargava said. All the sacked workers were trainee technicians while another 16 were suspended.
So far, 49 workers have been dismissed. Production had come to a halt on Monday morning after Maruti dismissed 21 employees on charges of sabotaging production and causing quality issues in vehicles being manufactured at the Manesar plant that can roll out 1,200 units a day. Workers were protesting after they were forced to sign a ‘good conduct bond’. “Worker should try to look for solutions and come to us for negotiations and should not indulge in protest and hamper the manufacturing processes,” Bhargava said. Company sources said operations had started in departments such as the welding and paint shops and press moving about 300 supervisors and workers onto the production lines. Assembling of cars would start in the next few days.
“We are on protest and there is no scope for full production at the plant. We are protesting and some solution can be reached only after Maruti Suzuki's management stops its illegal undertaking under the garb of new bond,” said Shiv Kumar, the leader of the protesting workers. Meanwhile, other workers’ unions in the Gurgaon-Manesar belt, dubbed as the country‘s largest automotive hub, held a late evening meeting to chalk out a strategy. “We are soliciting support of all workers in the area and have secured the support of representatives of over a dozen workers’ unions. We are chalking out a strategy to broaden the stir and extend support to our fellow workers,” said Suresh Gaur, president, Gurgaon union of All-India Trade Union Congress.
“The company has posted half a dozen senior executives teams in the factory which spent a lot of time streamlining processes and strengthening the quality production systems. This was in preparation for a ramp-up in the next few days. The company has been scouting for experienced and ITI-trained manpower in the Manesar belt. By late Tuesday , the seniors had identified over 200 people wanting to join on contract,” a Maruti spokesperson said.