Loss of Rs 437.40 crore, 7,000 people booked: What we know so far about Wistron plant violence
Violence erupted at Taiwanese company Wistron Corporation’s plant in Karnataka’s Kolar where a swarm of workers went on a rampage over non-payment of salaries and pay cuts at around 6:30am during a shift change on Saturday. The workers pelted stones, smashed glass windows, damaged vehicles, furniture and other office equipment in the process.
Karnataka’s deputy chief minister CN Ashwath Narayan condemned the incident and the state’s minister for large and medium scale industries Jagadish Shettar said on Saturday that the state government will provide necessary protection to the company.
Wistron is one of Apple’s global contractors and the company manufactures iPhone 7 handsets and second-generation iPhone SE devices in India.
Here is what we know so far about the violence at Wistron:
1. The company has claimed it suffered a loss worth Rs 437.40 crore. This included office equipment, mobile phones, production machinery and related equipment worth Rs 412.5 crore, infrastructure worth Rs 10 crore, Rs 60 lakh worth cars and golf carts, smartphones and other gadgets worth Rs 1.5 crore, as per company executive TD Prashanth.
2. Wistron has filed a First Information Report (FIR) with against 7,000 people, including 5,000 of its contract workers and 2,000 that did not work there, the police said.
3. The company had plans to hire up to 25,000 employees by the end of 2021 in a bid to expand their India operations but that does not seem likely. Currently, 12,000 people are employed by them of which 1,200 are permanent while the rest are contractual employees.
4. Apple Inc is currently investigating into the violence and the claims of non-payment and slashing of employees’ salaries. The company demands its suppliers provide safe working conditions, treat workers with dignity and respect, act fairly and ethically, and use environmentally responsible practices wherever they make products or perform services for the company.
5. “Our teams are in close touch with the local authorities and we’re offering our full support to their investigation,” the company said in a statement. Wistron issued a statement on the incident on the Taiwan Stock Exchange that said, “The company always abides by the law, and fully supports and is cooperating with relevant authorities and police investigations.”