Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Management seals HMT Ranibagh plant amidst workers' protest

THE management of the HMT Watches Ltd at Ranibagh locked the factory late on March 22 night evoking a strong opposition from the factory workers. The employees of the HMT factory were angered on reading the lock-out notice pasted by the authorities. Terming the lock-out as illegal, the worker averred that the case was still pending in the high court. On Saturday, the factor workers met the police DIG Ajay Rautela stating that...
the management wrongfully locked the factory on Friday night.
They further averred that presently there are 143 persons employed in the factory who have not received their salaries since January 2016 till date though salary slips are being provided. The daily attendance of the employees was also being registered through biometric means. A petition is also pending in the high court on this issue. According to sources, the management locked the factory after a stay on it was quashed by a single bench of the high court recently.
HMT was termed once Jewel of India by late PM and architect of modern India Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru.
It is noteworthy to mention here that earlier the office bearers of the Ranibagh HMT Karmchari Sangh had filed a petition in the High Court stating that the Central Government had issued an order dated November 17, 2016 for closure of the HMT plant at Ranibagh. The petitioner had pleaded that the order for closure of this HMT plant is not correct while also stating that an audit was conducted by two specialist agencies of the said plant and neither of the agencies had recommended closing down the plant.
The petition also stated that the dispute of the employees wages with the plant management is continuing. The plant cannot be closed without resolving the dispute on the subject of service period. The petitioners had stated that they had been working since 1998 and that the employees had not committed any mistake.
Earlier, The voluntary liquidation proceedings in respect of HMT Chinar Watches Limited shall be deemed to have commenced from the date of shareholders approval i.e. March 25.
The retired employees of HMT staged a dharna over pending dues and gratuity at the HMT entrance gate located at HMT township near Shapurnagar, Jeedimetla.
They submitted a memorandum against non-settlement of pending dues for their four-and-half year pending gratuity, two-year pending provident fund, over two decades pending 1992 pay revision dues and EL encashment to starving HMT employees.
It is statutory compulsion of government and HMT management to pay on the last day of retiring employee.
However, there has been no response from either corporate office or unit management to the several requests and labour commissioner orders.
Recently HMT Management sold property at Pinjore, Bengaluru and Moulali, Hyderabad and the funds received were diverted to other than statutory dues and statutory rights of the retired employees.
The management called representatives Shriyuth KV Rama Rao, Karnapal Reddy, Surya Prakash, Balvanth Reddy and Raghuramaiah and as usual promised to pay the dues at the earliest.

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