Logistics

Haldia Bulk Terminal moves court against KoPT

Our Bureau Kolkata | Updated on November 17, 2017 Published on October 16, 2012

Haldia Bulk Terminal Pvt Ltd (HBT) has filed a writ petition on Tuesday before the Calcutta High Court seeking the court’s intervention in improving law and order situation in and around the Haldia dock complex (HDC).

According to a note issued by HBT, improvement of law and order situation was needed for HBT’s resumption of operation. The court fixed first hearing on Wednesday.

HBT, which operated two mechanised berths of HDC owned by the Kolkata Port Trust (KoPT), was served with an ultimatum to restart operation within a week. The KoPT board of trustees, on October 11, took the decision. KoPT also issued an emergency tender for the evacuation of stored cargo at the HBT-operated berths.

KoPT spokesperson confirmed that the HBT has moved the court.

ABG-LDA-run dry cargo handler HBT had stopped operations since September 25. HBT also laid off 275 workers to “right-size its workforce” on September 24. HBT had earlier complained of “forced” induction of 650 employees in excess of its requirement.

HBT claimed that the company’s staff members were attacked in more than one occasions. Gurpreet Malhi, CEO, HBT, in the statement said: “We feel that this ideally should have been filed by KoPT in an attempt to restore normalcy at the Port Complex. We are extremely disappointed that KoPT has failed in fulfilling its obligations in providing us a normal conducive work environment by way of taking necessary steps to maintain law and order situation in the dock and its surrounding area. We fear that if this volatility continues, we will be forced to withdraw from HDC as we cannot continue to pay salaries and incur expenses in the absence of any revenue”.

He further said HBT had already attempted to start operations, which resulted in equipment pilferage, violence on employees and obstruction of work. “The latest of such incident being as recent as October 16 wherein HBT employees were attacked by a mob of 50”, he added saying an FIR has been filed with the police.

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Published on October 16, 2012
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