KOCHI: HDFC Life employees have decided to stage sit-ins all over Kerala in protest against the staff unfriendly policies of the company. Addressing media persons on Tuesday, K N Gopinath, state secretary of CITU, said the manner in which the company had terminated the services of 13 employees, many of whom had been working with the firm for 15 to 16 years, is the trigger that propelled CITU to launch sit-in protests.
According to him, the employees are being punished for objecting to various instructions that the company had issued recently. "The HDFC Life, which is a subsidiary of the new generation bank, is a company with a huge annual turnover. But, when it comes to equipment needed to canvas customers, the company directs the employees to buy one themselves. Of late, the company had directed the employees to buy a tablet to upload the policy details of the customer. Fearing they might lose their jobs, the employees bought tablets shelling out money from their own pockets. Soon after, the company asked them to buy biometric devices too. However, when they refused to do so, it began to cut Rs 1,000 from their salaries," he alleged.
Protesting against the company's move, NGBISA-CITU had approached Central Labour Commission and notified it about striking work on April 22. "The commissioner had called a meeting on Monday. However, without any prior notice or warning, the company moved against the employees who had held a protest meeting before its regional office in Ernakulam on April 13. The staff held the meeting in the morning and by evening on the same day, they were informed of their termination via an email," he said.
He said when they demanded the reinstatement of the employees, the company refused. "From tomorrow onwards we will lay siege to the six branches of HDFC Life all over Kerala for an indefinite period until the company changes its decision," he said.