Talegaon MLA threatens Bandh if GM Employees' Union plea unaddressed till 10 October
The move may disrupt operations of automotive companies in the belt, which are working over time to produce to cater to the demand in the upcoming festive season.
The impact of protesting the General Motors Employees' Union may disrupt the operations in the Talegaon belt, as the local MLA has called for a bandh on 11 October, if the issue is not resolved in the next week. The decision came a day after the employees union resorted to a hunger strike for not being absorbed by the new owners of Talegaon Plant - i.e Hyundai Motor India.
Sunil Shelke, MLA from Maval Taluka, from the Talegaon Dabhade belt, is part of the Ajit Pawar group. Shelke visited the protest site to support the workers' demands.
He assured them that their concerns about job security would be shared with Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chief Ministers Ajit Pawar and Devendra Phadnavis.
During his visit to the protest site, Shelke stated that despite being a member of the ruling party, which is part of the tripartite BJP-Shiv Sena-NCP state government administration, he is "pained to see the state government not taking the workers' concerns seriously."
If the administration and workers cannot reach an agreement by the 10th of this month, an indefinite Talegaon Bandh will be called " he said.
Members of the General Motors Union have claimed that the agitation is likely to further intensify unless the government takes prompt action and calls for a joint consultative meeting of all stakeholders to resolve the matter in the coming days.
"We will make sure that the employees' voices reach every family in the country, and both Hyundai and General Motors executives understand that money will not sway us."
"Our sole demand is that our jobs be rightfully returned to us," workers union members declared.
Senior political leaders such as NCP Chief Sharad Pawar, NCP MP Supriya Sule, and MLA Parth Pawar are expected to visit the protest site in the forthcoming days and boost the morale of the workers and their families.
Talegaon, an important auto cluster, is home to key Tier 1 automotive component suppliers such as Schaeffler India, Mahindra CIE Automotive, FEV, and Bosch Chassis Systems, as well as OEMs such as Greaves Cotton and JCB, as well as a slew of smaller Tier 2 and Tier 3 component makers.
"Even if it means that the auto industry suffers, I will remain undeterred to bring justice for the workers who have been left with no choice but to fight for their rightful jobs, which the incumbent firm must understand," Shelke said.
"We will not allow any work to be done in the company until the issues of the local sons of the soil and workers are resolved," stated the MLA for Talegon.
The American manufacturer ended local sales in India after more than two decades as part of a global restructuring plan in 2017.
Last month, the Korean automaker announced the signing of an asset acquisition deal to acquire and assign identified assets related to General Motors India's Talegaon facility.
According to the statement, the acquisition and assignment of the Talegaon plant are also subject to various requirements and regulatory approvals.
Hyundai Motors intends to construct an advanced vehicle manufacturing facility and start production in 2025.
The Shramik Ekta Mahasangh, a labour union umbrella group in Pune, was also present at the protest site in support of the GM union demand and stated that they would not allow Hyundai to resume operations until the workers' grievances were met.
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