Maruti Manesar violence case: 13 workers given life imprisonment
New Delhi: A Gurgaon court on Saturday sentenced 13 workers to life imprisonment for killing a senior human resource manager in a riot at India’s largest car maker Maruti Suzuki India Ltd in 2012. Four other accused were given five years in jail.
Most of them have already spent four years since their arrest in 2012. Fourteen more will be fined and released, the Hindustan Times reported. The defence lawyers will challenge the sentence in Punjab and Haryana high court.
In protest, Maruti Suzuki Mazdoor Sangh said that workers will go on a tool-down strike on 18 March for one hour between 9pm and 10pm across six plants of the company in Haryana.
“Due to conspiracy of administration, government and company management, and false witnesses, 13 of our friends have ben sentenced life imprisonment while four have been sentenced to five year imprisonment. We are upset with the judgment and therefore, on Saturday night (18 March), between 9pm an 10pm, there will be a tool down strike across our plants,” Maruti union said in a statement.
Plants to go on strike include Maruti’s plants in Gurgaon and Manesar; Maruti Suzuki’s powertrain unit in Manesar, Suzuki Motorcycles unit in Manesar; and auto component firms Belsonica Auto and FMI Auto.
Extent of production loss due to tool-down could not be ascertained immediately. Maruti alone makes auto 6,000 cars every day at its plants in Haryana.
On 18 July 2012, Awanish Kumar Dev, Maruti’s HR manager, was killed at a riot at Maruti’s Manesar factory. Some 100 people, including Japanese, suffered life threatening injuries, while plant equipment and office complex at the facility were burnt down. Production at the plant was shut for a month, which crippled Maruti’ sales and bottomline during the year.