Times of India #ILeadIndia #CSR #PR campaign is actually #ImisleadIndia


PICTURE COURTESY- FACEBOOK GROUP- I MISLEAD INDIA  https://www.facebook.com/IMisleadIndia 

Times of India
Subject- I lead India Campaign


Times of India  launched the ‘ I lead India ‘ campaign, with great fan fare on May 22, 2013 and which you claim that at a time when Indians are filled with negativity and pessimism, this initiative presents an alternative that goes beyond armchair criticism. It goes Beyond demonstrations and appeals, it urges you to stop pointing fingers and blaming others. According to you, ‘I Lead India’ is a clarion call which seeks to drive change too, but at the grass-root level, in 26 cities of India .
I am sorry I can’t say congratulations !
What a noble intention but do you know ? you have actually started on a wrong foot, by having Maruti Suzuki as your partner , a perpetrator of human rights violations, against its own workers. The workers have been thrown into prison ,, families thrown into trauma, grim future: the sacked Maruti labourers are still harried.
How can a newspaper of national repute like Times of  India, let such a company, which is notorious for suppression of workers democratic right of protest, sponsor the I Lead India Campaign. How can a company which unfairly fires and harasses workers has become a harbinger of change?
The Maruti Suzuki Workers are facing the most brutal repression by the government , although workers have adopted democratic and peaceful means available to demand the release of arrested 147 workers, withdrawal of and reinstatement of terminated 546 permanent and 1800 contract workers, the government has only responded with force and malice and in collusion with the Maruti Suzuki company management.
The Background

Maruti workers had applied to register a new union, independent of the company’s management, on November 4, 2011. The union was registered on February 29, 2012.to  represent over 2500 Maruti workers who went on strike three times last year demanding a union and improvements in their conditions of work.

The struggle in Maruti Suzuki India Ltd , Manesar started with workers demanded their constituional rights for legitimate trade union , they raised their voices demanding abolition of the contract workers system, and have raised their voice for dignified employment against the exploitative Maruti Suzuki Management. For this, they have been targeted and attacked by the management. The government, instead of assuring the rights of workers, has only acted in favour of the anti-worker interests of the company. It is letting loose a reign of terror and police and administrative repression on workers and their supporters.

On 18th July 2012, a supervisor in factory abused and made casteist comment against a dalit worker of the permanent category, which was legitimately protested by the worker. The worker was suspended and no action was taken against the supervisor. This resulted in a protest by the factory workers. The management stooped to the level of arranging 100 bouncers to fight workers , and they were joined by 4000 police force men, the councers and cops were in hand in glove . Some of the factory workers were critically injured and taken to the hospital.
Now the workers are fighting a legal case (State of Haryana Vs. Jiyalal case), under which 149 workers were sent to prison l. Police lodged an FIR. 59 workers names were written and 500/600 workers under the unknown category. Under the charge sheet 13 charges were put on 211 workers. Just before the charge sheet 66 workers were arrested on a Non- Bailable warrant. Some of them were not even involved but were considered future trouble makers. 2300 workers were dismissed from the Maruti factory. The case is still going on. The 211 workers are still waiting for a court hearing. The 2300 workers still remain jobless and are fighting to get their jobs back.
The workers have taken to the most peaceful means of protest since the dharna started on 24th March 2013, which included an 8 day fast unto death, which they broke after the Haryana Chief Ministers assurance. They have shown during this phase and also during the entire phase of the strikes in 2011 that they are unitedly asking for their rights in an exemplary show of democratic spirit, but the company and the state government is determined to distort reality and portray them as criminals. It is not even allowing them their democratic right to protest, either in Gurgaon, Manesar or in Kaithal.

In the Video below Wife of an arrested Maruti Worker.speakes, listen

The true face of Maruti Suzuki Management, is exposed in this letter from prison by the Maruti Suzuki Workers –

I quote

We all are children of workers and peasants. Our parents, with huge effort and sacrifice, ensured our 10th standard, 12th standard or ITI education, helped us stand on our feet to do something worthy in our life and help our family in need. We all joined Maruti Suzuki company after passing the written and viva-voce tests conducted by the company and on the terms and conditions set by the company. Before our joining, the company carried out all kinds of investigations, like police verification of our residential proof or whether we had criminal records! Neither of us had any previous criminal record. When we joined the company, the Manesar plant of the company was under construction. At that stage we foreseeing our future with the progress of the plant invested huge energy and diligence to lift the Manesar plant of the company to a new height. When the entire world was struggling under the economic crisis, we worked extra two hours daily to materialize a production of 10.5 lakh cars in a year. We were the sole creators of the increasing profit of the company, and today we are implicated as criminals and murderers, and those who engage in ‘mindless arson’! Almost all of us are from poor worker or peasant families which has been dependent on our job. We were struggling to weave dreams for our and our family’s future, such as of our own homes, of the better education for our brothers-sisters and children so that they could have a bright future and ensure a comfortable life for their parents who took the pain to bring after them. But in return, we were being exploited inside the company in all possible ways, such as:

1. At work, if any worker was unwell, he was not allowed to go to the dispensary and was forced to continue with the work in that condition.

2. We were not allowed to go to the toilet, the permission was there only at tea or lunch time.

3. Management used to behave with the workers very rudely with abusive language, and used to even slap or make them murga in order to punish them.

4. If a worker was forced to take 3-4 days leave because of his ill health or some accident or other serious problem in his family or because of the death of a relative, then half of his salary which amounted to almost Rs. 9000 used to be deducted by the company.

You can Read the full lettter here

Recently, the International Commission for Labour Rights (ICLR). team constituting of lawyers and trade unionists from India, France, Japan, South Africa, the USA , were on a visit to investigate the incidents that led to the summary dismissal of over 500 permanent workers and over 1800 contract workers at the Manesar plant of Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL) in August 2012. The team stated in their preliminary report that the alleged violence and human rights violation of workers at the Manesar plant of Maruti Suzuki will be taken up at the International Labour Organisation (ILO)and the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva , as If Maruti interfered with the workers’ rights to form union of their choice and terminated union members, there are serious violations of international labour norms. Maruti Suzuki is planning to set up a plant in South Africa, ICLR informed that the labour organisations there will oppose it , recognising human rights violations of the company in India .

The Preliminary Report can be read here

Although, Times of India is covering the protest I am amazed that you did not realise that your own public relation campaign could backlash, if you have maruti suzuki as a co sponsor ? It didn’t strike you , that there were workers striking and protesting against the oppression of maruti suzuki management ? Or wait a minute, Is it that Maruti Suzuki Management wanted to improve their image by involving in I lead india campaign and they are shit scared , because the movement by the Manser factory workers and the immense support it got from the entire country makes them in piss in their pants and also the fact that their sales figures had dropped immediately following the Manesar fiasco.

The Times of India, National newspaper claims to be India’s s most widely read English newspaper with readership over 7.6 million .It has some accountability towards its readers.

I demand Times of India to withdraw Maruti Suzuki’s ‘s sponsorship from I lead India Campaign and stop selling activism through this facade a campaign of corporate social responsibility of Maruti Suzuki.

Its like ‘ Nau sau chuhe kha ke billi ko haj ko chali ”
I lead campaign ka TIME KHATAM
An Ashamed , Times of India Reader

Kamayani Bali Mahabal

P.S- And if the I lead India campaign team, is still confused and unaware , what I have stated above, do check out http://marutisuzukiworkersunion.wordpress.com/

15 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. indialatest
    Jun 05, 2013 @ 23:40:46

    Well written. I Lead India is an example of the shameless and blatantly corrupt nexus between the media and the repressive capitalists like Maruti Suzuki.


  2. Trackback: Open letter to Times of India on I Lead India Campaign by Kractivist
  3. Pradeep Esteves
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 01:20:06

    I Endorse this


  4. Nilabh
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 12:06:12

    This is bull shit. Instead workers should learn to respect the lives of others. “At least one person died and around 90, including three Japanese executives, were injured as labour trouble”.

    Forming a labour union is much less important than anyone life. If you don’t like working in a organisation leave it. All Maruti management is saying is that have one union instead of multiple ones in each plant. Indian labour trouble is leaving car makers like Hyundai to invest in other countries while there earlier plan was to make India there only small car hub for this region and Europe.

    Unions and labourers have to come out of the socialist era mindset, else the country will be back to that era of no growth, forget inclusive or exclusive.


    • ashutosh
      Jun 07, 2013 @ 12:32:49

      first know about working condition in factory and then form a view point ,forming a union is democratic right and entirely laborers choice it has got nothing to do with management policy ….and brutal repression of workers is not uncommon rather a phenomenon


  5. Anjneesh Srivastava
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 12:36:07

    Shame on Maruti Suzaki…


  6. Kaveri R I
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 14:54:08

    I’m glad you wrote this Kamayani. I also thought that there should be a response when I saw the ad. Although the ad is also completely confusing with a whole bunch of “youth leaders” rushing about finding furniture to randomly burn…


  7. Tanushree
    Jun 07, 2013 @ 00:56:09

    Your letter is really wonderful Kamayani. it calls for good support from across the country. The same horror maruti is shifting to Gujarat.They have already moved lock stock and barrel into Becharaji in Mehsana district.This land has been given by the great Modi. So you know what will happen here now in the land where no Indian constitution works.


  8. Singh
    Jun 09, 2013 @ 20:11:30

    Curious. Why so few comments on this potential libellous post? I am no fan of ToI, but I appreciate the fact that it is also the only paper that grabs the eyes and ears of netas and babus in the hyper local level. I doubt municipal authorities ever take action after reading city stories in The Hindu or Indian Express, papers that claim to be the cornerstone of journalism. Yet papers other than ToI are very passive and only write highbrow items. ToI is often accused of being ‘elitist’ and consumer driver, yet its coverage of local residents’ issues is immense. Next time some drain in front of your house gets blocked and shit overflows, the first thing you will come up is with an idea to contact ToI about the problem so that some municipal babu will notice it. Try writing about the issue to the ‘other’ papers and you will see nothing would happen.

    Coming to the Maruti workers’ issue, it is sad that somebody had to die in the violence at the plant. Of course the workers deserve due justice, but they should also not forget that a senior manager was ‘murdered’ in rage. There is no mention of the murder in your leftist-liberal argument. Maruti has the first right choose whom to employ. The workers earn their livelihood from the work they do at the plant. They don’t have a right by default to work for Maruti. They should be the chosen ones, not the ones who get to choose. Don’t bite the hands that feed you.

    I can go on and on about how things actually get done in an assembly line. It is an integral part of the job to be busy all the time with little time for rest. This is how an assembly line works in the US and Germany and every other country. You can’t use your ‘reservation’ and ‘workers first’ argument just because the concept of working in an assembly line looks too harsh.

    If you hate ToI and Maruti so much, all you need to do is stop travelling in a Maruti vehicle and stop reading ToI.


  9. Trackback: Driving Force: Labour Struggles and Violation of Rights inMaruti Suzuki India Limited | kracktivist
  10. Trackback: Maruti Suzuki – What a sham #Ileadindia , you must say #ImisleadInida | kracktivist
  11. Trackback: Conduct fresh probe into Maruti violence, demands rights group #Ileadindia | kracktivist
  12. Trackback: #India- Clarion Call by Maruti Suzuki Workers Union “Chalo Manesar” on July 18 #mustshare | kracktivist
  13. Priyadarshini
    Sep 17, 2013 @ 09:21:33

    You might find this interesting, do follow up.

    And a quick question,

    I would like to ask why you read TOI?,
    I would just like to know.. Please don’t take this question add an attack on the choice of daily.
    TOI has watered down the quality of articles and content has come really down.
    If I am not misinformed, I have heard that TOI acquired readers digest and quality of that digest has also come down.
    had become fluff :/


  14. Arshad Mirza
    Dec 01, 2013 @ 12:47:21

    Assalamualeikum Mujhse Mere Relative uncle ne Aapse Question puchne k liye aapse kha hai ki KHATNA karna kab se or kis kiski khatna pehle hui thi or kha se khatna karna shuru hui or kyo hua. Vaise ye baat net se puchna mujhy accha ni lag rha h isse aam public gumrah bhi ho sakti hai. Iske liye mai maafi chahta hu. Or aapse ya koi bhi jo is masle ko sahi janta ho please iska sahi-sahi Answer de. Email bhi kar sakte hai or koi call bhi kar sakte hai.Email id- arshad.mirza18@gmail.comMob- +919871062482 / +918010708810 / +919213291704


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