Hike wages, Jagan tells Brandix

Visakhapatnam, May 4: Expressing solidarity with the employees of Brandix Apparels, who are on strike demanding wage hike, YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has said that he would sit on dharna along with the employees if the Company does not concede to the just demands within one month.

‘We will set one month deadline for the government and the Company to come to terms and clear the wage hike demand which is very much justified as the Company is making profits and what it is paying is a pittance. If the wages are not increased to Rs 10,000 per month I will sit along with you in the strike,’ he said while addressing the workers here on Wednesday.

‘We condemn the government’s adamant attitude and misusing official machinery by employing repressive measures. Police lathi-charging the employees including women and putting 500 of them in various police stations day long is an act of terrorising the workers who are on strike with their demands and the police action taking place when Chief Minister is in town shows the attitude of the state, he said.

We shall fight it out and any harassment to the employees will be unitedly fought and we shall teach the government a lesson, he said.

Some of the employees had poured their woes to Jagan, who assured them that things will fall in place in the coming one week.

It is unfortunate and unfair that the wage revision, which should take place once in five years was pegged at 20 % hike even as the company is reaping profits. The working conditions are pathetic in the factory with the management knocking the washroom doors and not allowing them to use it, he said.

The factory came into existence in 2006 and the pay revision should have taken place in 2011 but that did not take place. Normally wage revision takes place in five years but here the wages were slashed and the minimum wages were reduced to Rs 4,100 and the management has connived with the government and did not increase the pay as per norms and had increased only by 20 %.

The company has received benefits from the government for setting up the factory and had assured that it would pay the workers as per the norms besides other assurances and is running in profits but is not yielding to the main demand of pay hike, he said.

The company has boasted that it would give employment to 60,000 workers but had taken in only 18,000 but the paying is poor and given the present cost of living is not sufficient, he said.

‘The Company is exporting the garments to the US and Europe. Those countries pay nine dollars (Rs 600 per hour which works out to Rs 4,800 per day but here the payment is paltry. The wage should be increased to Rs 10,000 per month, he said.

The State should ensure that the wages are revised and the demands of the people are met he said and assured that the party will be with them and join them in the fight for wage hike.

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