Labour trouble continues at Hero MotoCorps Haridwar plant

Written by Roudra Bhattacharya | New Delhi | Updated: Sep 4 2013, 14:39pm hrs
Labour trouble continued at Hero MotoCorps Haridwar plant on Tuesday even as the company targeted to resume normal production at its largest manufacturing unit from the same day after resolving a dispute with the workers.

Production at the plant had almost come to a halt last Thursday night due to a protest over a suspension notice served to one worker by a large section of the around 4,000 strong workforce (of which about 500 are permanent).

Multiple sources close to the development told FE that around 16 workers at the plant have been given suspension notices by the company on Tuesday after a disagreement with the management.

The plan was to start work from Tuesday after an agreement was reached between the workers and management on Saturday. But the management then asked 16 workers, who were mostly leaders for the rest, to sign an undertaking that said that they will not cause any further trouble. When the workers refused, they were suspended. So the other workers are now supporting them and have decided not to resume work as was previously planned, the source said.

In response to an emailed query, the company said that production has resumed though workers have been suspended on disciplinary grounds. Our Haridwar plant resumed normal operations this morning (Tuesday) and production is going on as per schedule. Dispatches from the plant have also been as per plan. In keeping with our well-established code of conduct and guidelines of discipline applicable to all employees for smooth operations at the plant, appropriate action had already been taken against some erring workers. We remain committed to the principles of discipline, quality and productivity with a single-minded focus and determination, a Hero MotoCorp spokesperson said.

Meanwhile, union leaders at Heros Gurgaon plant said that they plan to soon visit the Haridwar facility in support of the workers there. Trouble with the management at Haridwar has been continuing since March this year over the formation of a new union at the plant, which is also Heros newest facility. While Heros Gurgaon and Dharuhera plants both have workers unions, this plant does not.

The continuing labour dispute at Heros Haridwar plant spells trouble for the company with the festive season around the corner for which it is currently building stocks at its dealers.

In a year when growth has been sluggish, the festive season is expected to provide the maximum push to volumes. With this respect, the Haridwar plant is most important as it makes around 9,000 units a day, as compared to about 6,000 units daily at Heros Gurgaon and Dharuhera plants. Also, the Haridwar facility makes Heros breadearners volume models like the mass market Splendor and Passion.

Hero MotoCorp shares on the BSE closed down 6.58% at R1,893.45 on Tuesday.