Production at India's largest car maker Maruti Suzuki's factory at Manesar in Haryana stalled on Monday as the company decided to make workers sign a bond of good conduct in response to instances of sabotage of production and rising number of quality problems at the plant.
The majority of the workers, who have been at loggerheads with the company over the formation of a new union, refused to sign the bond. No car could be manufactured at the factory. It's the third time since June that it has suffered a loss of production. The factory makes around 1,200 cars per day.
"There is zero tolerance to indiscipline in the company and the situation has reached a stage where it was directly harming consumer interest and trust," the company spokesperson said. "The company has decided to enforce Good Conduct Bond which seeks an assurance from the workers that they will not resort to go-slow, sabotage to production or indulgence in activities which would hamper the normal production in the plant."
Earlier, the company fired 5 workers and suspended 10 others on grounds of indiscipline alleging they were producing less cars than the stated capacity. Between August 23 and 25, only 1,570 cars could be produced against the capacity of 3,700 units while less than 1,000 of them could pass various mandatory quality checks. (see box)
Workers, however, alleged that the management was victimising them for going on strike in the first instance (in June) and a large number of them (varies from 500 to 800) have resigned from the official Maruti Udyog Kamgar Union.
"The management is in a vengeful mood and indifferent towards our needs," said Shiv Kumar, secretary to the rebel Maruti Suzuki Employees Union. "We do not want to strike work and want to work as we always do but how can we accept a bond that makes no sense. It is the company that does not want the factory to run peacefully."Hindustan Times had reported 10 days ago, that despite a compromise being reached in mid-June after the 13-day strike, atmosphere were not conducive and chances of another strike at the factory were high.