BENGALURU: On day 29 of their protest, employees of Indian Telephone Industries Ltd (ITI) celebrated Kuvempu Jayanti outside the factory gates as they were continued to be barred from the premises.
Writer and activist Du Saraswathi and Samakaaleena Samajika Samskrutika Vedike president Dr BR Manjunath were present at the protest along with members of other unions, who have shown solidarity with ITI employees.
The workers celebrated Kuvempu Jayanti, focusing on the writer’s concept of ‘Vishwa Manava’ or Universal Man. After months of pending payments as well as other issues, workers had formed a union and were allegedly singled out and barred from entering the premises on Dec 1.
ITI union representatives alleged that action was taken as their contracts expired. But the employees were not given any notice nor were they aware that they were working under contract, though many had been employed with the company for the nearly 35 years.
No solution was found till now. “Though the labour commissioner has asked the management to take the workers back, the company refuses. They said that we are part of a new contract and we should register through some portal. But the registration costs around Rs 600 per worker,” said Hemanth Kumar, one of the leaders at the protest. The new contract being offered by the company states that workers should not demand their back-pay or any other pay.