April 12, 2020

CITU Demands Action against Firms Sacking Workers during Coronavirus Lockdown

THE Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) demanded the central government’s intervention to prevent firms from sacking its employees and to ensure payment of salaries during the coronavirus lockdown in the country.

As part of its relentless efforts to safeguard the rights of the workers in the country, the union had written the fifth letter in a row, on this issue to the secretary of the ministry of labour and employment.

Tapan Sen, the general secretary of CITU, in the letter, highlighted the fact that most of the cases of violation of the government orders in this regard have occurred in the establishments that come under the purview of the central government. 

“All my previous four letters to you cited specific instances of violations of your directive by way of termination of employment of contract or casual workers in banks in West Bengal, Border Roads Organisation and Hydro Power Project in Jammu & Kashmir, nonpayment of wages in jute mills and tea gardens in West Bengal, requesting your corrective intervention to enforce the directive issued by your office only, to all concerned,” he wrote.

He also highlighted specific cases of wage cuts and termination of employment of workers of IT and ITES sector in Karnataka, Tamilnadu and West Bengal where workers have faced employment termination or salaries have been cut by half during the lockdown period causing much distress to the employees. 

In Bengaluru, one employee from Travel PD Co and 15 from Parallel Wireless were fired from their jobs during the last week. As many as 247 employees from Chumbak Design Private Ltd were terminated through forced resignation. While Hula Infotainment terminated 30 employees, M/s Hem & RAT terminated four employees and M/s Mistefa terminated 60 employees through forced resignation. The IVT Co firm terminated 22 employees and M/s Flying Out terminated 90 employees. One company, M/s Timken and M/s Classlap India Pvt Ltd invoked a 50 per cent salary cut while not paying the March salary to all the employees yet. 

In a similar scenario, 80 per cent employees were sent on forced unpaid leave which tantamounts to a wage cut, in M/s Erevmax Technologies in West Bengal. M/s Soumak, PICON, EEMDEE Digitronics Pvt Ltd and Pace Computer Service in the state have also invoked wage cuts on all the employees, the CITU reported in its letter.

Tapan Sen urged the labour secretary to intervene for a strong corrective action in the cases of brazen violation of the directive given on March 20, 2020.