Nascent Information Technology Employees Senate has written a letter to Union Labour & Employment Minister, Bhupender Yadav, condemning the layoffs started by Amazon in India and asked for the minister’s intervention into the matter. 

The organisation said it has received complaints from employees of Amazon that they are being forced to quit company voluntarily. “The company has sent a detailed Voluntary Separation Program (VSP) as well. Livelihoods of thousands of employees and their families have been made vulnerable. The company has also given a deadline to the employees till November 30, 2022 to complete this process,” Harpreet Singh Saluja, President at Nascent Information Technology Employees Senate (NITES) said in the letter.

Unwarranted

Further, the letter noted lay-off is essentially a condition where the employers are constrained to deny work to their workforce owing to conditions that bring forth a temporary inability to keep their business going. “This is clearly not a scenario in Amazon’s case,” the letter added.

NITES highlighted that a worker who has served for at least a year of continuous service cannot be retrenched unless served a notice three months in advance and prior permission from the appropriate government. 

“The said application has to be submitted by the employer along with the reasons for such retrenchment. The said application shall be taken into consideration and scrutinised through an inquiry. However Amazon has clearly violated the existing provisions of Indian labour laws, which aim at protecting the worker’s right,” the letter said.

Amazon did not respond to businessline’s queries about the letter. However, in an earlier statement about Amazon layoffs’ impacting India employees, Amazon Spokesperson, Kelly Nantel said, “As part of our annual operating planning review process, we always look at each of our businesses and what we believe we should change. As we’ve gone through this, given the current macro-economic environment (as well as several years of rapid hiring), some teams are making adjustments, which in some cases means certain roles are no longer necessary. We don’t take these decisions lightly, and we are working to support any employees who may be affected.”

The company officially announced layoffs from the Devices and Services team on November 16.

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