India Toyota 'good conduct' offer to locked-out wildcats

Toyota said it will end a 12-day lockout at its plant in Bangalore, India if employees sign a 'good conduct' pledge.

Submitted by Steven. on January 21, 2006

The company declared the lockout on January 8 at its plant on the outskirts of Bangalore after unionised employees staged a wildcat strike to protest the dismissal of three colleagues accused of 'indiscipline' - 'union activity' according to the workers.

AFX News reported 'The management has decided to lift the lockout,' after workers expressed a willingness to return, said plant general manager A.R. Shankar.

But before the 1,550 unionised workers go back to the job, they must sign 'an undertaking to maintain discipline and ensure full production,' he said.

The union representing the workers said they will have to meet to discuss whether to accept the company's proposal. Toyota has refused to rehire the three employees whose dismissal sparked the labour trouble.

The factory, owned 89% by Toyota and 11 pct by India's Kirloskar Group, said it has been maintaining partial production with help from its 800 non-unionised staff.

Output has fallen to 30 vehicles daily from 92, Shankar said.

Toyota, which has a 5% share of India's fast-growing car market, declined to say how much money in lost production the lockout had cost the company.

It makes multi-utility vehicle Innovas and luxury Corollas at the plant as well as importing its Camry sedan and sports utility vehicle Prado for the domestic market.

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