Initial wage negotiations at Hero inconclusive

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: Jan 22 2013, 08:02am hrs
The initial wage negotiations between workers and management of two-wheeler major Hero MotoCorp's Gurgaon plant remained inconclusive today and the matter has now been referred to Haryana Deputy Labour Commissioner for further deliberations.

The negotiations have been going on since August 2012.

Workers, who are demanding a monthly wage hike of up to Rs 18,000 over a three-year period, have decided to wait for the outcome of the discussions under the state Deputy Labour Commissioner (DLC) and will decide on its future course of action after one week.

"The initial discussions under the presence of a junior level state labour official have failed today. Now the matter has been forwarded to higher authorities under the state DLC," Hero MotoCorp Workers Union (HMCWU) President Kawalpreet Singh told PTI.

The management is offering workers a hike of slightly more than Rs 6,500 per month spread over three years, which was the hike for the company's Dharuhera plant's workers during the three-year agreement signed in 2011, he added.

"We are asking for a hike of about Rs 15,000-18,000 per month spread over a period of three years as cost of living in NCR is very high... The negotiations were held under the presence of many senior company officials like the heads from HR and finance departments," Singh said.

The workers union had submitted its demand in August last year and its representatives have been holding negotiations with the management since then.

When contacted, a company spokesperson said: "We have had several rounds of talks with members of the union at our Gurgaon plant with the hope of a reasonable, sustainable and sensible settlement.

"We will continue to engage with the workers towards achieving this objective of reaching at an amicable solution, without allowing ourselves to be coerced into decisions governed by external pressure tactics."

The nearly 1,200 permanent workers, under the aegis of HMCWU, are at present observing silent protest by wearing black badges and not taking tea and snacks provided by the company to press for their demand.

They have, however, ruled out going for any strike or slowdown in production immediately.

When asked if the workers would resort to strike, Singh said: "At present we are protesting very peacefully. However, if nothing concrete happens in this week, then we will decide our future course of action accordingly."

Although company officials have so far declined to share details of current salaries of the workers, industry sources said the average gross salary of a worker at Hero MotoCorp's Gurgaon plant stands at around Rs 46,000 per month.