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Japan Toyota-led JV suspends workers at two Indian plants

‘The company has decided to lift the lockout on 24th,’ Additional Labour Commissioner J T Jinkalappa said after talks with the management and the union to break the impasse.

To a question whether there is any precondition to lift the lockout, he said ‘the management has put some conditions like they want employees to maintain discipline...’ Asked if any consensus had been reached on the wage issue, he said, ‘Lifting lockout was our priority, others are all secondary... we can settle that matter later.’

Toyota Kirloskar Motor, the subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corp of Japan, had on March 16 declared a lockout, following the failure of talks between the management and the union over wage negotiation. The union is demanding a wage hike of Rs 4,000 as against Rs 3,050 proposed by the management. Toyota Kirloskar Motor in a statement said, ‘The Company has submitted to the Deputy Labour Commissioner that considering the inclination and in the interest of majority law abiding team members, we have decided to lift the lockout implemented vide notice dated March 16.’

‘Consequent to our above decision, the team members are welcome to resume work with effect from March 24 after signing a simple undertaking on good conduct,’ it added.  The company has agreed to lift the lockout on 24 March, but they are talking about some conditions, Toyota Kirloskar Workers Union (TKMEU) General Secretary R Satish said.

‘We will have to go through the conditions in detail, we will also have to take legal opinion on these conditions... we will take a final call at our union’s general body meeting on Saturday about next step,’ he added. Satish also said ‘we have got some information from media about company’s statement regarding suspending few of our workers... we haven’t received anything officially till now.’

The company said in an earlier statement, ‘A decision to suspend some of the members pending inquiry, for serious misconduct, was taken earlier in the week. This is in line with the company’s rules and regulations.’

India’s M&M wins court war against US dealers’ mischief

New Delhi:
A court in the US has denied a motion for ‘class certification’ in a lawsuit brought by US automobile dealers against Mahindra & Mahindra, the company said on Thursday. ‘The United States District Court in Atlanta, USA, issued an order on March 14, 2014 denying the plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in a lawsuit brought by US automobile dealers against Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M),’ the homegrown auto major said in a statement.

It said the plaintiffs in Ackerman vs Mahindra & Mahindra, Ltd took legal action against M&M based on agreements they had made with Global Vehicles USA, Inc (GV), a former distributor for the company. The plaintiffs sought to represent all dealers who entered into agreements with Global Vehicles to sell Mahindra vehicles in the USA. ‘The court concluded that a number of factual and legal issues regarding dealer claims must be resolved on a case-by- case basis, and this case was inappropriate for class certification,’ it said.

Under ‘class certification’, the group of dealers would have been allowed to sue M&M jointly. ‘This order is an achievement for Mahindra in its defence of these claims, as these claims can now proceed in litigation only on an individual basis,’ M&M said.
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