Mass strike action at Indian factory
Over 300 workers have been on strike and staging protests for the past month at Asti Electronics, an Indian based subsidiary of the large Japanese Asti Corporation, after the company tried to sack them.
According to campaign group Good Electronics the workers, mainly young women in their 20’s, were hired by subcontractors to work on the assembly line making parts for automobiles and had been employed as casual labour for years.
According to reports the workers were dismissed by managers without notice due to low demand.
The workers requested immediate reinstatement but the company sent in the police and company security guards who forcibly removed them from the premises fearing a factory occupation.
Following their eviction a tent was erected outside the factory gates, and 310 workers, including 250 women, began a 24/7 dharna (sit-in) outside the factory. The workers are demanding their reinstatement, regularisation of their contracts and full back-pay.
Two of these sacked workers have now started a hunger strike.
This industrial action has started to garner support from other workers in nearby factories as precarious employment and low wages are common among workers in these industrial zones. The workers have also set up a strike fund to help coordinate and support the strike.
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