Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Will Centre listen to Uttarakhand HC directive to revive HMT?

GIVING some ray of hope for hundreds of workers in, HMT, the Uttarakhand High Court recently asked the Centre to explore the possibilities of reviving HMT and directed the management of the PSU that was once termed as the timekeeper of the nation, which has stopped production to pay all pending wages to its employees within two weeks.
The order was passed by Justice Rajeev Sharma on a plea seeking modification of an earlier order of the...
high court which said that all dues and pending wages of the employees must be paid.
The petitioners GMT Employees Union told the court that the central government has already released fund for the payment of wages of the employees and despite the money being with the management it is asking for modification of the order of payment.
It also produced a letter written by a central government official in support of their argument which says money has been released to the company to enable it to make the payment of pending wages.
Justice Sharma took a strict view of the matter and asked the central government to explore all possibilities to revive the factory and directed the HMT management to pay all the pending and wages to its employees within two weeks.
Following the order, HMT management withdrew its application for modification, counsel for the petitioners Kartikey Hari Gupta said.
Earlier, union ministry of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises released the funds for salary of 146 HMT employees of its factory located at Ranibagh near Haldwani. A letter has been sent to the Prime Minister by them informing that they have not getting their salaries since January 2016.
After the Central government in January 2016 decided to close three sick units of HMT including HMT watches, employees in the HMT factory located at Ranibagh in Kumaon decided not to give
Along with HMT watches, HMT Chinar Watches and HMT Bearings were also shut down. The decision was taken at a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in January 2016 by offering an "attractive" voluntary retirement scheme to the employees as per 2007 pay scales. Amount of Rs 427.48 crore had also been sanctioned for the employees.
Incorporated in 1953 by the Government of India as a Machine Tool manufacturing company, HMT over the years diversified into watches, tractors, printing machinery, metal forming presses, die casting and plastic processing machinery, CNC systems and bearings.
Today, HMT comprises five subsidiaries under the ambit of a holding company, which also manages the tractors business directly.

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