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HR head victim of Maruti violence

Manesar(PTI): The man who lost his life in Wednesday’s arson at the Maruti plant here has been identified as Awanish Kumar Dev, General Manager, Human Resources. His charred body was identified by family on Thursday.

A total of 91 workers have been arrested for the ruckus, in which around 100 people were injured. The company has alleged that the violence was an “orchestrated act of mob, which has implications beyond one company or region.”

The arrested employees were produced before a local magistrate and remanded to 14 days judicial custody. They have been charged with rioting, murder, attempt to murder, unlawful assembly, assault and trespass. The violence, in which several executives, managers and supervisors were attacked and office facilities, the security office and the fire safety section gutted, was triggered by caste related remarks by an official against a worker.

The worker allegedly beat the official up, following which he was suspended, triggering large scale violence.

The Haryana government and police have pledged to take stringent action against those responsible for the violence.

Maruti Suzuki said the violence is a “negative trigger for existing companies and regions across the country as also for prospective investors and job seekers.”

Rejecting the company’s charge, Maruti Suzuki Workers Union (MSWU) accused the management of calling in hundreds of bouncers on its payroll to attack the workers.

It said instead of taking action against the supervisor who was involved in a scuffle with a shop floor worker, “the management immediately suspended the worker concerned without any investigation.”
“When the workers along with union representatives went to meet the HR to demand action against the supervisor and revoke the unjust suspension of the worker, the HR officials flatly refused to hear our arguments,” MSWU president Ram Meher said in a statement.

The union, however, said it was ready for a dialogue with the management and wanted to resolve the issue amicably.

Taking a serious view of the violence, Haryana Chief Secretary P K Chaudhery said a special investigating team has been formed under Assistant Commissioner of Police, Gurgaon, Ravinder Tomar, to investigate the matter.

Haryana DGP Ranjeev Singh Dalal visited the plant and said the police has taken over the entire facility to maintain law and order. An anguished India Inc condemned the violence in the Maruti Suzuki premises in Gurgaon and said frequent incidents of labour unrest in Gurgaon-Manesar area are compelling industrial units to migrate to other states.

“Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry expresses its anguish and strongly condemns the violence at Maruti Suzuki premises,” its Secretary General D S Rawat said.

Echoing his views, CII’s Deputy Chairman (Northern Region) Jayant Davar said in Jaipur that the violence at the Maruti plant “is extremely unfortunate.” The violence depressed Maruti Suzuki India share price by over 9 per cent, costing investors Rs 3,183 crore in a single day in the stock market on Thursday.

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