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Workers disabled cameras, then lynched executive
Published on 23 Sep. 2009 11:12 PM IST
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In a sign of how pre-meditated the killing was, workers switched off security cameras at their factory before attacking the Vice-President of their company. The executive died after repeatedly being hit on the head with iron rods. 12 workers have been arrested so far for the murder. Roy J George, a graduate of IIM Calcutta, was attacked on Monday at the Periyanaickanpalayam branch of Pricol, an auto instruments maker based in Coimbatore. 4 other staff members were injured in the riot. The workers were allegedly upset after 42 employees were sacked late last week for indiscipline. Executives claim workers are being incited by a local union. “A majority of our workers do not support this CPI (Maoist) led union. After this incident our workers are scared to report to work. It’s really worrisome that this is the state of one of the country’s oldest engineering companies. But the government and the police officials have promised us all possible support to wade over the crisis,” says Vijay Mohan, CMD, Pricol. Roy J George was credited with ushering in labour reforms at Pricol. Centre asks TN for report on murder Condemning the murder of Roy J George, a senior executive with auto parts maker Pricol, in Coimbatore yesterday allegedly by the company workers, the Centre today sought a report from the Tamil Nadu government. “We condemn such types of incident. Law should take its own course. In democracy unless we follow law, we won’t get redressal of any grievances,” Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge told reporters. Striking employees of Pricol, angry at dismissal some of their colleagues, on last Monday allegedly attacked George, V-P(Human Resources), with sticks and iron rods injuring him badly. He in a hospital the next day. “We have sought a report from Government of Tamil Nadu and our Chief Labour Commissioner is also in touch with the local labour officer,” Kharge said when asked about the action taken by the his ministry on this incident. “As soon as a detailed report is submitted, we will find out what is to be done,”, he further said but did not mention any timeframe for submission of the report. Kharge said if the employees had any issue they could have sought grievances through the Industrial Disputes Act or could have approached the government. Pricol supplies auto parts to car makers including Ford India and General Motors India. It is also a vendor for domestic auto majors like Tata Motors and Maruti Udyog Ltd. Meanwhile, Automotive Component Manufactures Association of India condemned the “brutal” killing asked fro better enforcement of law and order. ACMA President Jayant Davar asked the central and state governments to step in and ensure effective implementation of law and order, particularly in the auto component clusters of Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Haryana. Davar sought “severe punishment of those involved the act” and said industrial disputes should be resolved amicably through discussions and workers should not take the law in their own hands. Pricol on Monday dismissed the employees from its unit at Kuniyamuthur, citing low productivity as a reason.

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