On 12th September 2011, the Maruti-Suzuki Employees Union organised a huge rally from Kamala Nehru Park to the Mini Secretariat in Gurgaon.
This rally was organised to demand withdrawal of the requirement of 'good conduct bond', reinstatement of union leaders and other workers and recognition of their Union. More than 3000 workers participated in the rally.
Workers shouted slogans like, 'Down with Hooda government's connivance with the management!', 'Down with the Labour Commissioner conniving with the management!', 'We will not tolerate the good conduct bond!', 'Implement the labour laws!', 'Long live the Maruti Suzuki Employees Union!', 'Long live the unity of the workers!'. A huge rally took place at the main gate of the Mini Secretariat. Chief Minister Bhupendra Singh Hooda was given a petition.
It is well known that the management did not allow workers to enter the Maruti Suzuki Manesar plant on 29th August 2011 and there is a undeclared lock-out since then. They are forcing the workers to sign a 'good conduct bond', which is illegal.
It has been 14 days since the Maruti Suzuki workers took to the streets in defence of their rights. However, the Haryana Government is silent on this issue. Through his statement on 8 August 2011, Osamu Suzuki of Suzuki Motor Corporation, Chairman of Maruti, had sent a message to Hooda Government that if they don’t succeed in suppressing the workers, they will shift production to a new plant in Gujarat. Subsequently, Chief Minister Hooda met with these Japanese looters and has proposed to give them land for a new plant.
This clearly shows that the domestic and foreign monopoly capitalists have full control over the Central and State Governments.
Several indicators clearly show the intent of the Hooda Government – drag workers in the court on false allegations, Labour Department cancelling the registration of the workers' union without any basis, Labour Commissioner advocating on behalf of the Maruti-Suzuki management to the workers sitting on a dharana, etc.
In June 2011, the workers of the Manesar plant had gone on a 13 day strike to press for the their demand to form their own union. After the strike was over, the management put all its force to prevent the formation of the workers' union. On 27th July 2011, four workers' leaders were thrown out of the factory on trumped up charges. By 29th August 57 workers were dismissed, most of whom had provided leadership to struggle. Management left no stone unturned to prevent the formation of the Maruti Suzuki Employees union. Labour Commissioner connived with the management and in an illegal manner cancelled the registration of the union on some technical ground. When the files were to being re-submitted in Chandigarh, on 29th August, the management locked the factory out without declaring a lockout.
Management has violated the labour laws by dismissing permanent workers without any investigation. To break the resolve of the union and workers, management has stationed in the factory premises, hundreds of goondas in addition to Haryana police. Such goondas had murdered Ajit Yadav, a worker in the Rico factory, in 2009. The Haryana government and the Labour Department are silent on all these issues and allowing intense exploitation of the workers.
Some mischievous elements in the management have launched false cases against the union office bearers by getting their agents to beat up the supervisors and then putting the blame on the union
We would recall that in 2000 also, the Maruti management had created a similar situation that exists today in the Manesar plant. Hundreds of workers were forced to sign illegal undertakings. Now again Maruti-Suzuki management is repeating the same. From the above it is clear that the management and the Haryana Government want to deprive the workers of their right to form their union. In other words, they want the intense exploitation of the workers by the company to be continued. Whoever is raising their voice against this is being crushed.
Lok Raj Sangathan, Mazadoor Ekta Committee, AITUC, HMS, INTUC, CITU and Suzuki Powertrain Employees Union, Maruti Udyog Kamgar Union, Rico Employees Union (Gurgaon and Daruheda), Hero Honda Employees Union, Hitachi Employees Union, Sona Steering Employees Union, Satyam Components Employees Union, Densu Employees Union and others have come forward to support of the right of Maruti-Suzuki Employees Union.
An ad hoc committee has been formed to strategize on how to take the struggle of Maruti Suzuki workers to an honorable settlement. According to this ad hoc committee, the various unions in NCR will organise a huge rally in Gurgaon on 16 September. Mazdoor Ekta Lehar is confident that Maruti-Suzuki workers will keep the fire of their struggle alive. They will have full confidence in their leaders and take their decisions together in the interest of Maruti-Suzuki workers and working class as a whole.