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Citing losses post Article 370 abrogation, industrial units ask workers to quit

ASHWANI SHARMA
EARLY TIMES REPORT

UDHAMPUR, Feb 17: While the government on one hand is planning more and more help to the industries in J&K, the latter are not allowing local employment and are harassing the locals on one pretext or the other. Some cement manufacturing units like Shri Ram Industry and others at Udhampur is ousting the local boys working in there for the last 3-5 years on the pretext of falling profits after the abrogation of Article 370.
They also said that our provident funds and insurance premium continue being deducted for the last two or three years but last month their provident funds, health insurance and other welfare funds are also not being deducted and they are asked to look some other job sooner than later.
“We are working in this industry for the last 4-5 years. After August 5 last year there was heavy demand and profits touched sky but we were never given any bonus,” Rajiv Kumar (name changed) an employee working in one of the industrial units informed.
The victim workers said that the administration should come to their rescue as they have families to support.
Sources informed that according to law, however cumulative share of local employees in all the categories shall be minimum of 55% of the total employment in every unit and there shall be increases of 5% in every year in order to eventually reach 90% level in all categories.
But this order is not used on ground level even maximum technical employees are outsiders, sources maintained.
“I have to pay loan installment of my bike and I also have to buy medicine for my ailing parents apart from routine expenditures,” another employee of Shri Ram Industry said on condition of anonymity.
When contacted, officers at DIC said that the workers can’t be fired like this and their PF and other welfare funds should not be stopped.
Assistant Labour Commissioner Udhampur when contacted said so far they have no such complaint but assured whenever such a complaint comes up they will take a cognizance.

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