A group of Shiv Sainiks on Wednesday disrupted the Annual General meeting (AGM) of Reliance Energy at Marine lines, demanding that the company’s contract workers be made permanent employees.
The sainiks dodged tight security and entered the venue and raised slogans as they charged towards the podium where the company's chairman Anil Ambani was seated.
The party workers wanted to give Ambani their charter of demands. The Sena claimed that Ambani made an immediate exit through the backdoor of the stage.
After a two-hour drama and a near-stampede, the police resorted to lathi charge. Senior leaders, Anil Desai and Gajanan Kirtikar, and other sainiks were arrested and taken to Azad Maidan police station where a complaint was registered against them.
In a statement issued later in the evening, the Sena said that Reliance Energy had ignored its demand for regularising the services of 6,500 contractual workers. The party claimed that Kirtikar and Desai had held unsuccessful talks with Reliance Energy.
They said the company was not willing to make 6,500 contract workers, who had worked for 20 years, permanent because that would mean giving them retirement benefits.
The Sena also alleged that six Marathi-speaking workers had been transferred overnight to the Delhi-Haryana circle out of vengeance.
“The party leaders had tried to solve the issue by approaching the company several times but because it did not see any results, the Sena decided to storm the meeting and present its demands to Ambani,” a senior Sena leader said on condition of anonymity because he is not authorised to speak to the media.
Reliance Energy issued a statement saying: “At the behest of our known corporate rivals, a group of individuals attempted to create a motivated disturbance at our AGM, but their efforts were foiled by security personnel, and the AGM proceedings were concluded in a normal manner,” the statement said.