Karnataka Government To Ban Workers’ Strike: Toyota Kirloskar Factory In Bidadi

The Karnataka government on Tuesday decided to ban the ongoing workers’ strike at Toyota Kirloskar Motor factory in Bidadi. It also decided to ban the lockout declared by the management and told them to lift it immediately.

A decision to this effect was taken at the meeting convened by CN Ashwath Narayan, Deputy Chief Minister and Ramnagar district in-charge minister between the state government, Toyota management and TKM Workers Union members this morning.

However, a government order banning the strike under Section 10(3) of the Industrial Disputes Act will be issued tomorrow, the sources said. The government’s ban order will come only after the Labour Commissioner sends a report based on the conciliation meetings with the workers union and the management, the sources told.

Later this evening, a conciliatory meeting was held at the office of the labour commissioner, wherein both the management and workers’ union prevailed on their stand.

The TKM management expressed their willingness to lift the lockout, subject to assurance from the Union and workmen to maintain normalcy and peaceful atmosphere both inside and outside the plant. “In accordance, we expect the operations to resume shortly,” TKM said in a statement.

The TKM Workers Union did not respond despite repeated attempts.

During the meeting, Ashwath Narayan and Labour Minister Shivaram Hebbar told the representatives of the Toyota management to lift the lockout from tomorrow and restart the production at their Bidadi factory. They also instructed the workers union to cooperate with the company and return to work.

They also directed the TKM Workers Union and the management to resolve their issues through a mutual discussion and dialogue. Magadi legislator Manjunath, Gaurav Gupta, principal secretary, department of commerce and industries were present during the meeting.

TKM had to declare a ‘lockout’ at both its plants in Bidadi on November 10 as a result of an illegal ‘sit-in strike’ called by the TKM Worker’s Union and its members. The strike was called upon protesting the suspension of one of the employees who has had a systematic record of misconduct and was again involved in a breach of discipline and unacceptable behaviour within the factory premises, TKM said in its statement.

As a part of the ‘sit-in strike’, the team members had unlawfully stayed in the company premises and had compromised Covid-19 guidelines, thereby leading to a potentially volatile situation at the factory. This led TKM authorities to declare a lockout for unionised employees at its plant in Bidadi, bearing in mind the safety & well-being of its employees.

On November 13, TKM suspended 39 workers pending an enquiry.

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