New Delhi: Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) on Wednesday said it has resumed rolling out cars from its Manesar plant as it looks to normalise operations, even as tension between the management and workers continued for the third day.
In the meantime, the labour dispute at the car maker’s facility is threatening to spread to other manufacturing units in the Gurgaon-Manesar industrial belt, with the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) and the Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS) planning to hold a joint protest rally and public meeting on Thursday in front of the MSI plant.
“Maruti Suzuki began assembly operations at the Manesar plant this morning. The factory rolled out its first fully made Swift since production was halted on Monday morning. In all, the company manufactured 60 cars at the plant today,” MSI said in a statement.
In the last two days, the company had done the ground work for resumption of work in the press, weld and paint shops by bringing in additional workers. These sections of the plant are highly automated, it added.
“The company brought in 120 ITI-trained workers this morning to the plant on a contract basis to strengthen manpower for assembly operations,” an MSI spokesperson said.
In addition, 50 engineers from the Gurgaon plant and 290 supervisors are working at the Manesar plant. The engineers are strengthening quality systems and preparing for a ramp-up, he added.
“In all, the company now has 500 trained and experienced people available for production. They will be deployed in phases in the next few days,” MSI said.
With vehicle production being completely affected, MSI has suffered an estimated production loss of about 2,400 units, valued at around Rs 120 crore till Tuesday.
The company did not suffer any production loss on Wednesday as it was a scheduled holiday for Eid-ul-Fitr.
With no end to the impasse in sight, AITUC, CITU and HMS have come out in support of MSI’s workers with a protest rally being planned.
“There will also be a public meeting. Workers and union representatives of various factories, including Hero MotoCorp, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India, Sona Koyo Steering and Rico Auto, will join it,” AITUC secretary D L Sachdev told PTI.
Commenting on the stalemate, CITU Haryana State president Satvir Singh said: “Workers are willing to talk to the management for an amicable solution. However, the management is simply not willing to talk and are not allowing workers to get inside. This is not a democratic way of functioning.”
Production at the Manesar plant had been at a complete halt since Monday after the company decided to force workers to sign a ‘good conduct bond´ before entering the factory premises, following alleged “sabotage”, resulting in quality issues that arose last week.