The carmaker has sent a lay-off notice to all 1419 workers over an email, and a copy of the same was provided to the secretary and president of the General Motors Employees Union.
General Motors India on Friday laid off 1419 workers at its Talegaon plant. According to a report from ETAuto, the Indian subsidiary of the US carmaker sacked all workmen at its Talegaon plant, which is situated on the outskirts of Pune by invoking section 25 of the Industrial Dispute Act. Sources close to the matter say the Employees Union is likely to challenge this move legally. This move reportedly may extend a legal battle between the automaker and its employees on the winding of its Talegaon plant.
The carmaker has sent a lay-off notice to all 1419 workers over an email, and a copy of the same was provided to the secretary and president of the General Motors Employees Union. The company says the workforce will receive lay off compensation under Section 25-C of the Industrial Dispute Act 1947. They will be paid compensation due to them, which is 50 per cent of the basic wages and dearness allowance previous monthly take home.
The copy of the notice which was displayed at the factory gate stated, “Since the lay-off has been declared largely because of Covid-19, being a natural calamity, no prior permission from the appropriate authority has been sought, nor is the same necessary under section 25-M of the ID Act.”
The company has continued to pay employees, despite no vehicles being manufactured over the last four months, said George Svigos, international director for communication, General Motors told ET. He further mentioned, “We have offered employees a separation package well in excess of the statutory requirement. Regrettably, the union has refused to negotiate the separation package, so the company has been compelled to explore all legal options available to the company to support the wind-down of operations at the site.”
The spokesperson further mentioned that production at GM’s Talegaon plant was ceased on December 24, 2020. He claimed that the automaker gave prior notice of over a year to its employees regarding the end of production. And, there is no prospect of resuming production at the site. He also mentions that the carmaker has been incurring a monthly outgo of ₹ 10 crore towards employee’s salaries since December 2020 despite zero production at the plant.
He further added, “We continue to seek all relevant government approvals to support the wind-down of operations.”
Sandeep Bhegade, President, General Motors Employees Union said to ETAuto, “The union will challenge the same with the relevant authorities. Our stand is we will continue to fight for our rights at various platforms.
Moreover, the company has intimated to the additional commissioner of Labour, Pune through a letter wherein the carmaker said due to extensive surge in Covid-19 pandemic, the company has been forced to lay off workmen.