SAMBALPUR: Tension gripped Hirakud on Friday after two groups of labour unions of Hindalco Industries Limited (HIL) clashed with both the groups claiming to be the genuine union. At least 130 contract labourers were taken into preventive custody by the police to avert any untoward incident.
Sources said a labour union of HIL split into two groups with each claiming to be the genuine union and using the same registration number. They had even moved the office of Deputy Labour Commissioner (DLC) here over the issue.
With the issue pending disposal, one of the two groups decided to hold a meeting in front of the main gate of HIL on Friday. Apprehending clash between the two groups, HIL management informed the police to avoid any untoward situation.
Subsequently, Section 144 of CrPC was promulgated in Hirakud from the wee hours of Friday. Inspector-in-Charge of Hirakud police station, Mihir Panda, said they took the labourers into preventive custody as they congregated in front of the main gate of HIL violating the prohibitory orders.
Labour leader Sudesh Nag said they had taken a decision to stage a demonstration in front of the DLC office at Sambalpur on Friday. He claimed members of the union had gathered in front of HIL main gate to go to Sambalpur but police took them into custody which is unjustified.
Speaking on other issues, Nag said in July last year, the Government had issued a notification to hike wage by `50 per day for contract labourers.
Though the union has been demanding payment of revised wages since long, the HIL management has turned a deaf ear, he alleged. Even the DLC was apprised of the issue but in vain.