GM’s production loss hits 600 units at Gujarat unit

PTI Halol (Gujarat) | Updated on March 12, 2018


Labour unrest at carmaker General Motors India’s Halol facility entered the second week today, causing a loss of production of over 100 units each day.

On March 16, workers resorted to strike at the Halol facility in Gujarat that has an installed capacity of 85,000 units a year, protesting transfer of some employees to dealership outlets and opposing a long-term wage settlement agreement signed in December last year.

When contacted, GM India Vice President Mr P Balendran told PTI: “Of about 900 workmen, 550 have reported, while 350 are still absent. Currently we are producing in only one shift.”

The company is rolling out about 70 units daily compared to 190 units earlier. “The production loss so far is about 600 units,” he added.

This is the second such incident at Halol in five months.

The plant came to a halt for four days when about 900 workers went on a strike from October 29, 2010, demanding wage hikes, leading to GM India’s total production loss of 450 units.

Interestingly, the Economic Survey for 2010-11 had said Gujarat witnessed the highest number of strikes and other forms of labour unrest in recent times on account of various financial and disciplinary issues.

Gujarat, under its Chief Minister Mr Narendra Modi, has been trying to project the State as an investment friendly destination.

Earlier this year, Mr Modi had claimed the state was able to attract investments to the tune of Rs 20.83 lakh crore in the two-day long ‘Vibrant Gujarat Summit’ held in January.

Meanwhile, the Income Tax department recently slapped a notice on Gujarat government seeking details of the 7,936 MoUs it signed with several investors during the summit.

Mr Balendran said the latest development has nothing to do with the company and it is due to an inter-union rivalry. “The Government has declared the strike illegal“.

The plant has one registered workers body, GM Employees’ Union. The company claims that a new union, formed under the aegis of Congress-backed Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), has been spearheading the agitation.

GM Employees’ Union General Secretary Mr Bharat Maganbhai Patel said: “They (striking workers) are protesting against the transfer of four employees. But our contract clearly says that we can be transferred to any dealer point on work related issues... Such strikes are not good for us“.

The Halol facility has an installed capacity to produce 85,000 units every year on three shifts. It produces premium hatchback Aveo U-Va, entry-level sedan Aveo, mid-sized sedan Optra, luxury sedan Cruze and multi-utility vehicle Tavera.

Besides Halol, GM India has another plant at Talegaon in Maharashtra with an installed capacity of 1.4 lakh units per year. It currently produces compact cars Spark and Beat.

Published on March 23, 2011

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