-The Business Standard
A year after the first labour strife at Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL)’s Manesar facility, the car maker is set to face prosecution proceedings by the Haryana government’s labour department for not adhering to the agreement signed with workers at the unit.
J P Mann, deputy labour commissioner, Haryana Labour Department, said, “According to the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, every company with more than 20 workers is required to have a grievance redressal cell. The management at Maruti Suzuki has not set up a welfare committee and a grievance redressal unit, as was agreed. We have, therefore, initiated action against the company.” A hearing on the case is likely in mid-July.
Officials at Maruti Suzuki declined to comment, saying the matter was subjudice.
However, an industry source said, “The Maruti Suzuki Workers Union has been registered now. Wage settlement negotiations are underway. The company wanted to resolve these issues, as had been demanded by the workers, before forming the welfare committee and the grievance redressal unit.”
In the settlement agreement signed between the workers and the management of MSIL in October 2011, no timeline was specified for constituting these committees.
MSIL, the country’s largest car maker, had witnessed three instances of labour strife between June and October 2011. These had led to a revenue loss of about Rs 2,500 crore. Workers at the company’s Manesar plant had demanded independent representation through a second union. The company had agreed to set up statutory grievance redressal and labour welfare committees to instill confidence in its workforce and these committees were scheduled to have representation from both the management, as well as workers.