Eight days wages of 840 workers was withheld by the Pricol Ltd management to merely penalise the workers for their abstention from work on the 25 April, to join the state wide protests supporting the farmers cause.
The Pricol workers, however are determined to fight against this and they are now in an indefinite hunger strike. On June 19th – AICCTU, AIARLA along with other organisations have coordinated a well attended inaugural event, expressing solidarity with the 12 Pricol workers and their supporters in Coimbatore, and Chennai who began their hunger strike.
After more than 10 days the workers are still in hunger strike. Despite this the Pricol management is unbelievably callous towards the demands of the workers and most importantly the bosses are utterly indifferent to the deteriorating conditions of the fasting workers!
Having amassed crores of rupees worth of wealth from the toil of the workers over these years, it’s absolutely criminal on the part of the employer – Pricol Ltd to just penalise the workers by abusing the colonial era Payment of Wages Act (1936) thus imposing the disgusting punitive deduction on the workers wages. The Payment of Wages Act (1936) has still got the provisions to deduct the wages of the workers and that’s obviously there to discourage workers from striking.
Pricol workers did communicate the management well in advance about the 25 April strike in support of the farmers issues. However the employers side still took the actions against the workers by deducting 8 days wages of the 840 workers, which amounts upto Rs 65 lakhs of workers hard earned money – outrightly robbed to the kitties of the employers.
We call the Pricol management to immediately attend to the demands of the workers and take due care of the health, and conditions of the striking workers.
We also demand the state administration to intervene immediately to protect the workers and to enforce the rogue management of Pricol with legal charges for harassing the workers by unjustly holding on to their wages.
Let’s show our complete support and solidarity to the striking workers.
Puthiya Podhuvudamai Iyakkam
New Socialist Alternative – Chennai