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Workers threaten strike at Hyundai’s Chennai plant

By Motortrend India Staff   |   29 November,2011

Trouble is brewing Hyundai Motor India Ltd’s (HMIL) plant here with a section of workers threatening to go on strike from on Wednesday demanding reinstatement of 18 sacked colleagues.

Hyundai Motor India Employees Union (HMIEU), which is not recognised by the management, is insisting that the workers, who have not been taken back under a tripartite agreement signed in December last year, must be reinstated.

“What we want is that the dismissed employees must be reinstated. We are planning to strike in front of the plant tomorrow,” HMIEU Honorary President A Soundararajan told PTI.

In December last year, the company management, HMIEU and Tamil Nadu Labour commissionerate had signed a tripartite agreement and the company reinstated 14 employees out of 32 workers, who were dismissed during a three-day long stir at the plant in June. The remaining workers who were "found guilty of major offences" during the strike were asked to seek legal recourse.

Reacting to the workers threat, an HMIL spokesperson said: “Any agitation on this issue would be a violation of this tripartite agreement. Hence as per the terms of this agreement the matter stands closed.” In the interim, HMIL has as matter of routine been receiving strike notices from HMIEU and the last one was received in August this year, it added.

Ruling out the prospect of reinstating the dismissed workers, the spokesperson said: “The agreement clearly directs the dismissed employees who have been found guilty of major disruptive and violent offenses to seek legal recourse in appropriate courts.”

Soundararajan also said instead of considering HMIEU’s long pending demand for recognition, the management has allowed the formation of a new worker’s body, United Union of Hyundai Employees

“Management was saying they will not have a Union and will prefer a seven member Worker’s Committee but now, they have removed the committee and formed a new union,” he added.

HMIEU is backed by Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU). HMIL currently has two manufacturing facilities at Sriperumbudur near here employing more than 4,000 people. It manufactures over seven models and exports to over 100 countries. It has about 1,500 permanent workers at the manufacturing facilities, which has a capacity of producing six lakh vehicles per annum.

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