'No parleys with unconnected people on Dharwad plant lockout'

'No parleys with unconnected people on Dharwad plant lockout'

Tata Marcopolo rules out immediate end to standoff

An immediate end to the lockout of Tata Marcopolo Motors’ plant in Dharwad seems unlikely as the company has stated that it would not talk to “unconnected” people.

“In a continued effort towards resolving the ongoing issues, we at Tata Marcopolo yesterday (Tuesday) attended the meeting called by the ALC (Assistant Labour Commissioner). We were present and willing to hold discussions with people connected to the company. However, as clarified even earlier, we expressed our concern in engaging with unconnected people during the meeting,” Tata Marcopolo said in a statement.

“The self-proclaimed office bearers of Krantikari Kamgar Union, an outfit not recognised by the company on technical and legal grounds, insisted on participating and eventually prevented any meaningful dialogue taking place. We remain committed to finding a long-term and fair solution to the current situation, without any compromise on discipline, safety, productivity and quality,” the company said, adding that it remains hopeful that a solution may be found soon that will allow it to go back to production.

The plant in Dharwad is equipped to manufacture more than 15,000 buses a year and employs over 2,500 people.

The problem started on January 31 with mass absence of workers, after which the company temporarily suspended operations the next day. As the situation deteriorated, the company declared a lockout on February 6, fearing threat to the safety of people and equipment.