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Toyota Kirloskar Motor's lockout continues

Snapshot: Lockout at Toyota's Bengaluru facility continues, as the workers aren't ready to sign any undertaking

The conflict between Toyota India and its on-strike workers continued even on Monday, as the Toyota Kirloskar Employees Union (TKMEU) refused to sign any undertaking for re-joining duty after a week-long lockout.

“As we are against giving or signing any undertaking, none of us has entered the factory for the first shift beginning 6 a.m.,” said, Prasanna Kumar, union president of Toyota Kirloskar Motors.

The Japanese car maker has been insisting that the worker give an undertaking abide by rules governing their work ethic and conduct. Now, the workers’ union have roped the state government to mediate with with the company's management to resolve the concern.  

“As a lockout was illegal, it is for the management to lift it and allow us to resume work. The undertaking is against our rights as workers. We have right to protect our interests and ensure that our welfare is not jeopardised,” Mr. Kumar said.

“We have sought an appointment with the labour secretary later in the day for his intervention, as the State government is legally empowered to direct the company to lift lockout unconditionally, as it (lockout) was declared illegally on March 16 without the 14-day notice period,” he added.

On March 16th, Toyota Kirloskar Motor had declared a lockout following the failure of talks between the management and the union on wage negotiation.The union is demanding a wage hike of INR 4,000 as against INR 3,050 proposed by the management.

Out of the total strength of about 6400 workers, about 4,000 are union members, while the remaining are employed on contract in both the factories. This is the second time a lockout has been declared, the first being in 2006 over the dismissal and suspension of some workers.

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