Worker unrest at Hero MotoCorp's Gurgaon plant

The development comes at a time when a section of workers at the company's plant in Haridwar continue to stay away from work after a tool-down strike last month-end.

Last Updated: Sep 07, 2013, 17:49 PM IST

New Delhi: Tension is brewing at Hero MotoCorp's plant at Gurgaon with workers threatening to go on a strike Saturday, protesting against alleged management action against some colleagues.

The development comes at a time when a section of workers at the company's plant in Haridwar continue to stay away from work after a tool-down strike last month-end.

"We are protesting against action taken by the management, which has filed unjustified police cases against some of our colleagues. We will go on strike anytime unless our demands are met," Hero MotoCorp Workers Union (HMCWU) President Kanwalpreet Singh told PTI.

When contacted, a company spokesperson said some "misguided elements in the Union body" assaulted supervisors in the shop floor of the plant yesterday after a conciliation meeting.

"These officers who were assaulted have filed reports with police and police is free to investigate the matter," the spokesperson said.

However, in view of this gross act of indiscipline inside the plant, the management remains determined to deal with the incident swiftly, fairly and firmly, he said.

Accordingly, nine workmen involved in the incident have been suspended pending inquiry, he added.
Explaining the genesis of the current problem, he said when a three year wage settlement was signed in April this year, union representatives at the Gurgaon plant had "promised to ensure that all workmen will put in honest work. However, some workmen have continuously refused to fulfil their side of the commitment".

As per the wage settlement agreement, the company had agreed to hike salaries of workers on an average by Rs 9,000 per month over a period of three years as part of the agreement. This will be valid for three years with retrospective effect from August 1, 2012.

The Gurgaon plant of the company has 1,100 permanent workers. It rolls out about 6,500 two-wheelers per day.

Ruling out bowing to the strike threat, the spokesperson said: "We wish to categorically reiterate that under no circumstance will Hero MotoCorp compromise on matters of discipline and the company stands firm in its adherence to the well-established code of conduct and guidelines applicable to all employees for smooth operations at the plant."

Meanwhile, a section of workers at the Haridwar plant, where there was a tool-down strike, continue to stay away from work and claimed normal production has been affected.

"A large number of us are still staying away from work and protesting outside the plant asking 16 of our colleagues to be taken back," a technician at the Haridwar plant said.

He further said: "We are also protesting against the decision of the management to force us to sign an undertaking that we won't indulge in strike while entering the plant for work. We have refused to sign it."

The spokesperson however, refuted the claim saying: "Our Haridwar plant is also functioning normally, and production is going on as per plan."

On August 31, the company had announced that a tool-down agitation by workers at the Haridwar plant has been withdrawn. The stir had hit production for about two-days.

The Haridwar plant is the company's biggest, with a daily capacity of about 8,500 units, and manufactures models including the popular Splendor, Passion and Glamour. It employs about 4,000 workers.

Hero MotoCorp, the country's largest two-wheeler maker, has two other plants, at Gurgaon and Dharuhera in Haryana, each with a capacity to roll out around 6,500 two-wheelers a day.