Wage issue: Toyota workers seek Karnataka govt's intervention

The management and the union have been discussing the charter of demands for the period FY14 for the past 10 months, the Japanese auto major said in a statement.

PTI| Updated: Mar 18, 2014, 08:44 AM IST

Mumbai: Upping the ante against the Toyota Kirloskar Motor management over the wage hike issue and the subsequent lockout at the two plants near Bangalore, the company's employees union on Tuesday sought state government's intervention in the issue.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor, the subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corp of Japan, had yesterday declared a lockout at its two manufacturing plants at Bidadi near Bangalore, following the failure of talks between the management and the union over wage negotiation.

"We want the government to immediately intervene in the matter and resolve the issue. We have already submitted a memorandum to the government in this regard," Toyota Motor Union sources said here.

Alleging that the lockout is only for the nearly 4,200 unionised workers at the two facilities, sources said the unions will hold a demonstration in front of the Labour Commissioner's office in Bangalore on Tuesday.

"The two facilities combined have 4,200 regular employees besides 1,500 contract workers. However, the company has declared lockout only for the unionised workers. It is rolling out vehicles with the help of contract workers and those some 1,500 staffers including managers who are not part of the union," they said.

The union is demanding a wage hike of Rs 4,000 at the main level as against Rs 3,050 proposed by the management, they said, adding, "We are only asking for the same hike which the management had agreed upon for the 2013 fiscal as well. But what the management is offering us is much below the FY13 level," sources said.

The management and the union have been discussing the charter of demands for the period FY14 for the past 10 months, the Japanese auto major said in a statement.

"As a bipartite agreement was not reached, the Karnataka Labour Department has conducted seven tripartite meetings to reach a settlement. But the conciliation efforts have not yet resulted in an agreement, leading to the lockout," the company said while announcing the lockout.

The statement also said even as the talks were on, a section of the workers, instigated by the union, has resorted to deliberate stoppage of the production line and threatened supervisors and continuously disrupted business for the past 25 days.

"In this background, the company is left with no other option but to declare a lockout to ensure the safety of its workers and management personnel," the statement concluded.

Toyota Kirloskar Motor is a 89:11 joint venture between the world's largest auto company Toyota and the Pune-based Kirloskar Group, respectively.

The two plants, set up on a sprawling 432 acres of land parcel in the Bangalore suburb, have an installed capacity of 3,10,000 units, split into 1 lakh and 2.10 lakh units respectively.

The company manufactures the MPV segment leader Innova, SUV Fortuner, sedans Corolla Altis, Etios, hatchback Etios Liva and luxe sedans Camry and Camry Hybrid.

The company also sells premium SUV brands Prado, Land Cruiser and hybrid sedan Prius as completely built unit.