A case study:

Last week on 12th Dec., in Narasapura, Near Bangalore, a production unit, a franchisee of Apple/iPhone devices, viz., Wistron saw rioting said to be by agitating contract laborers during the wee hours. During change of shift, closing B shift, a gathering of around 200-300 workers ransacked the factory, destroyed offices, facilities causing damages to installations. Initially, the damages caused were quoted @ Rs.437 Cr. but revised subsequently downward to Rs.43 Cr.or so. It was reported that over 3000 employees who were employed thru' contractors were not paid their salaries/wages for about 3 months and allegedly paid lower wages than assured by the contractors triggering the violence at workplaces. Police swung into action, controlled the rioting workers and over 150 were taken to custody. The state & central govt. are monitoring the situation closely. The contractor stated to be absconding since the incident, may be traced now.

Here, as an HRM what are the options and action to be taken-may be obviously action on the contractors will be initiated as per the extant agreement. But how about the damages caused and the loss of production? Let's for this analysis keep aside any insurance claim, what are the other options available to the employers & for the employees' side, could they escape from severe punishments. There is ifs & buts from the Criminal laws angle as the guilt should be proved beyond doubt and difficulties are there to use CCTV footage to identify all of those involved/caused damages especially the incident that happened during midnight.

Members are requested to cite similar incidents concluded in the past.

From India, Bangalore
Asso.prof.(commerce & Management)
Management Consultancy


In such situations, there are no eventual winners, all are losers to some extent or the other. Could it have been prevented? Yes definitely, all the three parties viz the employer (including contractor) , employees and Government all failed to see the other's perspective and failed to act conscientiously. But will the normalcy be restored, yes provided there is a definite plan to improve the affairs. I had the experience of enduring a 37 day tool down strike in a major manufacturing involving about 20,000 employees, although there was no violence, as a repercussion of interunion and intra union rivalry. It is the management which has long term losses in allowing the situation to continue, so should work out a definite plan on how it is going to come out of the difficult situation. The non-payment of salary for such a long duration would surely ignite passions and it only needs a spark to ignite the whole place, so how to deal with such situations, the contract labour management etc has to be carefully thought out.
From India, Mumbai

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